February 1, 2020

New Data Shows US Life Expectancy Increasing, Reversing a Troubling Trend

BuzzFeed News reports that data from the National Center for Health Statistics shows an increase in life expectancy to age 78.7 last year, the first increase in US life expectancy since 2014.

Federal health officials believe the increase in life expectancy is a result of lower heart disease and cancer death rates, and a 4% decrease in drug overdose deaths. The latter is notable as it was the first time drug overdose deaths decreased in 28 years.

As medical treatments and technologies improve, and Americans begin living longer, a survey from Natixis Investment Managers found that an alarming number of Americans are under-funding their retirement savings. Their research showed that 27% of American workers have borrowed against their retirement plan, and another 27% have taken early withdrawals. The reasons given for not saving more for retirement ranged from daily living costs, credit card debt, housing costs, and health care costs. Unfortunately, new data from TD Ameritrade shows that 28% of Americans age 60 and older have less than $50,000 saved for retirement, and another 13% have $50,000-$99,000 saved.

Given these two trends, increased longevity as well as a trend toward underfunding retirement savings, more US seniors are exploring a life settlement. Life settlements allow a life insurance policy holder who no longer needs or wants the life insurance coverage to sell their policy to a buyer for some amount of the death benefit. These transactions have helped many seniors in their retirement years by getting rid of a costly, and often ever-increasing, premium payment in exchange to a sizable bump in their retirement fund!

Life settlements are regulated at the state level, so be sure to reach out to a licensed life settlement provider or broker if you wish to explore this option.

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