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Workers caring for minor children and elderly parents twice as likely to seek financial advice
Being a member of the of the working “sandwich generation”—those raising children and serving as a caregiver for older relatives—comes with a steep emotional and financial price tag. New findings from MetLife’s
8th Annual MetLife Study of Employee Benefits Trends study quantify some of the pressures and costs while pointing to the workplace as a source for assistance.
In the U.S., about one in five full-time employees is a caregiver for an older relative, and nearly three-quarters of these employees have children under the age of 18 as well.
The MetLife study found significant differences with regard to:
“As the U.S. population ages, the percentage of employees who are caregivers will continue to grow, and they will be looking to employers for help and support,” said Sandra Timmermann, director of the MetLife Mature Market Institute.
In fact, the study indicated that members of the sandwich generation are more likely to seek financial advice actively. Only 5 percent of this demographic group say they do not consult with anyone about their personal finances, compared to 30 percent of noncaregiving employees with children.
Workers with bookend family responsibilities are turning to multiple resources for financial information and advice, as shown below:
PressuredWorkers with bookend family responsibilities are turning to multiple resources for financial information and advice, as shown below:
Sandwich employees (caring for minor children and elderly parents)
Employees with minor children only(not caring for parents)
Friends and relatives
Financial pubs/web sites
Are "very concerned" about their own long-term care needs in retirement
Mature Market Institute.
“There is a great appetite for information and financial advice among members of the sandwich generation,” added Timmermann. “Caregiving not only impacts one’s current lifestyle, but one’s view of the future,” as evidenced by the sandwich generation's elevated concerns about their own long-term care needs.
8th Annual MetLife Study of Employee Benefits Trends was conducted during the fourth quarter of 2009. The employee sample comprised 1,305 interviews with full-time U.S. employees age 21 and older, at companies with a minimum of two employees.
Stephen Miller is an online editor/manager for SHRM.
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