Our daily roundup of retirement news your clients may be thinking about.

What's missing from Americans' plans to live long
Increased longevity carries certain financial implications but many people fail to fully understand the impact of longer life span, according to a report from researchers from the University of Southern California and the Society of Actuaries. Some 58% of respondents aged 60 and most of those who reached the age of 70 said they have not engaged in any retirement planning over the past three years, the survey found. Few respondents also claimed they have done some planning for their long-term needs, the report says.  --CBS Moneywatch

Medicare's biggest problem is probably not what clients think
Medicare is likely to exhaust its Hospital Insurance Trust's cash reserves by 2030, indicating that it faces a looming an insolvency crisis, according to The Motley Fool. This revenue shortfall can be attributed to increased longevity of beneficiaries and rising health care costs. However, the bigger problem Medicare faces is the poor decisions that retirees make because of their inability to fully understand the program's rules.Indeed, one survey conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation in 2012 indicates that more than a third of low-income seniors were completely unaware that Medicare had an enrollment period, compared to only 11% of higher-income seniors. Moreover, the survey found that just three in five Medicare recipients review their plan options each year. A year earlier, a survey by UnitedHealthcare and the National Council on Aging showed that less than half (46%) of seniors had a solid understanding of how Medicare works, and 39% said their ability to navigate Medicare's options was "fair to poor."  --The Motley Fool

Even some Social Security reps are confused about the new rules
Some Social Security staff may have inadequate knowledge about the provisions of the new law, according to Forbes. Because of this, clients are advised to know the things they are allowed to do before speaking to a Social Security representative. If they feel they receive a wrong answer to their queries, they should look for someone in the agency who is knowledgeable about their concerns and can provide a convincing answer to their questions.  --Forbes

Clients interested in variable annuities? Read this first
Retirement savers who have a low tolerance for risk are advised to avoid variable annuities given the volatility of today's stock markets, according to MarketWatch. This is because the markets dictate the value of the product, which could drop once the prices decline. The fluctuation in value could undermine the clients' goal to secure their retirement.  --MarketWatch

5 considerations when retirement planning for 2
Couples who are planning for their golden years need to discuss what they want and come up with a set of shared retirement goals, according to this article in USA Today. They also have to decide on the retirement saving vehicles to use to build their nest egg as well as strategies to handle their taxes. Couples have to name their beneficiaries in these accounts and account for possible problems, including divorce, before finalizing their retirement plan.  --USA Today

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