The majority of Americans think that planning for retirement is easier for those who are not married, according to Charles Schwab's latest quarterly retirement pulse survey findings released yesterday. More than half (53%) of married Americans and more than two-thirds (69%) of singles say they believe it is easier to make major financial decisions for retirement when there is no spouse in the picture.

Despite these perceptions, Schwab's survey finds that singles are on average less prepared and less confident than those who are married when it comes to being financially prepared for retirement. According to the results, 85% of married Americans are already saving for retirement, compared with 67% of singles across all age groups. More than one-third (38%) of married Americans express confidence in their retirement readiness compared to just 32% of those who are single.

"At a time when the number of single adults is at a historical high in our country, our survey shows that this group has ground to make up in terms of retirement readiness," says Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz, senior vice president of Charles Schwab & Co., Inc.. "But regardless of marital status, there are some fundamental steps that all Americans can take to get better prepared, including starting to save as early as possible."

According to the survey, both married and single respondents acknowledge there are also potential drawbacks to retirement planning without a spouse. Nearly two-thirds (65%) of married people and 57% of singles, say that not having a spouse's additional income or investments as a safety net could be a challenge. Similarly, 58% of married people and nearly half (47%) of singles say it might be challenging to not have a spouse to rely on for health insurance or long-term care.

Additional survey findings include:

Joint households Fifty-eight percent of married Americans say it would be easier to decide when to retire without having a spouse to consider.

Someone else in the picture Sixty-two percent of those that are married say choosing where to retire would be easier if they were single.

Advice More than one-quarter (27%) of married respondents say their financial confidante is someone other than their spouse, while more than half (55%) of singles turn first to close family members, such as parents and siblings.

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