Subjective Expectations, Social Security Benefits, and Saving for Retirement

Published: 2019
Project ID: UM19-06


Americans reach retirement with varying degrees of preparation, with many facing shortfalls in savings. We propose to use unique survey data collected among respondents to the Understanding America Study to measure the relative roles of subjective beliefs about retirement income — particularly Social Security (SS) benefits — and behavioral biases in determining retirement readiness, and to identify subpopulations for more targeted interventions. These findings will inform communication strategies about SS benefits and alternative strategies based on choice architecture to support retirement preparedness.