Golden Years

Rethinking Life In Retirement

Nearly seven in 10 investors say they may continue working in retirement

Nationwide’s eighth annual Advisor Authority study powered by the Nationwide Retirement Institute® explores critical issues confronting advisors, financial professionals and individual investors—and the innovative techniques that they need to succeed in today’s complex market. For additional insights on this survey data, visit here.

Columbus, OH – January 25, 2023 – Turbulent market conditions and rampant inflation have forced investors to consider working after their retirement, according to Nationwide’s eighth annual Advisor Authority survey, powered by the Nationwide Retirement Institute. Over two-thirds (69%) of non-retired investors may work or may continue working after they retire, and more than two-fifths of these investors (44%) say they’ll have to work to supplement their retirement savings or income out of necessity.

In the face of prolonged economic uncertainty, investors are rethinking what life after retirement may look like and are adjusting their priorities accordingly. Two-fifths (40%) of non-retired investors plan to move to a different city or region after retiring – though perhaps not for the reasons some may think. Less than a quarter (22%) of these individuals cite being near family among their top three reasons for relocating. The most common incentives for relocating include lower cost of living (43%) and lower taxes (34%), which may indicate that these investors’ decisions are being influenced by macroeconomic factors.

Advisors and financial professionals are noticing the same trend, with 78% of advisors saying their clients will or may continue working after retirement – in line with the 69% of non-retired investors who say post-retirement employment could lie ahead. Not all investors see working through retirement as a means to stay financially afloat, however; 60% cited staying physically and mentally active and 41% aim to preserve a sense of purpose in their continued employment. As ongoing economic turbulence impacts all aspects of daily life, prudent planning is even more important ahead of major life changes such as a post-retirement career change or relocation.

“The idea we have of what retirement looks like has changed for many people, whether due to necessity or because they are looking to stay active and engaged,” said Rona Guymon, Senior Vice President of Nationwide Annuity Distribution. “Regardless of the reason, now is the time for advisors and financial professionals to check in with clients who are approaching retirement to make sure they have a plan in place for their next steps, and to work together to ensure their path is one that will lead to a secure and happy retirement. It’s also a great opportunity to drive a conversation about what life may look like when they reach a point where they are unable to work, which could come sooner than some may expect.”

Is Ignorance Bliss?

According to the survey, non-retired investors who work with an advisor or financial professional are less confident than those who do not work with one. Nearly half (49%) of non-retired investors with a financial advisor are “very nervous” about spending down their retirement savings in today’s current market environment, compared to 32% of investors without an advisor.

Regardless of the reason, now is the time for advisors and financial professionals to check in with clients who are approaching retirement to make sure they have a plan in place for their next steps...

This sentiment proliferates across the board. Of those non-retired investors working with an advisor, one in five (20%) are confident about their post-retirement financial futures, 20% are confident in their financial plans for retirement despite market volatility and 23% are taking steps to adjust their portfolios in light of recent market volatility. These confidence levels increase when talking with non-retired investors without an advisor, with 36% confident in their post-retirement financial futures, 35% confident in their financial plans for retirement despite volatility and 43% taking steps to adjust their portfolio.

“The confusing economic environment we’re living in could lead some self-guided investors to be more optimistic than their counterparts who work with financial advisors because they are less familiar with the financial risks they will face in retirement,” said Guymon. “I think it’s likely that financial professionals are doing a better job of managing client expectations about uncertain realities of the road ahead. Regardless, this data shows that there is an opportunity for advisors to help calm nervous clients by reconfirming the importance of following their financial plan. And I would guess that many of those without an advisor could have some blind spots that a financial professional could help address before it’s too late.”

Tried-And-True Solutions Are Serving Investors Amidst Volatility

In an ever-changing world, non-retirees are turning to trustworthy solutions to strengthen their retirement planning. As a result, products that offer protection against market volatility and guaranteed income in retirement remain popular in financial planning. Annuities (71%) are the top choice for advisors protecting clients’ assets against market risks, followed by diversification and non-correlated assets (63%). Advisors are also moving cash on the sidelines for buying opportunities (42%) and relying on hedging strategies (41%) to protect against market risk.

Advisors and financial professionals are leading the annuity charge. Over half (54%) of investors with a financial advisor are incorporating annuities to protect against market risk, compared to just 30% of those without an advisor. Financial diversification and non-correlated assets are the most common strategies employed by both investors who have an advisor and those who do not (52% and 59%, respectively).

“Emerging tools and technologies may be helpful but could carry risk and uncertainty for the portfolios of DIY investors,” said Guymon. “At least for now, there is no real substitute for a trusted and qualified financial professional, who can help clients anticipate and plan for future challenges and tailor portfolios for specific needs. Advisors are also well positioned to help clients understand how protection solutions like annuities, which can offer income security and protection against market volatility, may fit into their plan.”




About Advisor Authority: Methodology
The eighth annual Advisory Authority Survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Poll on behalf of Nationwide Advisory Solutions from July 27 – August 16, 2022 among 506 financial advisors and 521 investors with $10,000+ investable assets, ages 18+. Investors are weighted where necessary by age, gender, race/ethnicity, region, education, income, marital status, household size, investable assets and propensity to be online to bring them in line with their actual proportions in the population.
About The Harris Poll
The Harris Poll is one of the longest running surveys in the U.S. tracking public opinion, motivations and social sentiment since 1963 that is now part of Harris Insights & Analytics, a global consulting and market research firm that delivers social intelligence for transformational times. We work with clients in three primary areas: building twenty-first-century corporate reputation, crafting brand strategy and performance tracking, and earning organic media through public relations research. Our mission is to provide insights and advisory to help leaders make the best decisions possible. To learn more, please visit
About Nationwide
Nationwide, a Fortune 100 company based in Columbus, Ohio, is one of the largest and strongest diversified insurance and financial services organizations in the United States. Nationwide is rated A+ by both A.M. Best and Standard & Poor’s. An industry leader in driving customer-focused innovation, Nationwide provides a full range of insurance and financial services products including auto, business, homeowners, farm and life insurance; public and private sector retirement plans, annuities and mutual funds; excess & surplus, specialty and surety; pet, motorcycle and boat insurance. For more information, visit Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.