Sun Life Financial Study Reveals Baby Boomers Need More Flexible Income to Fund Their Retirement Lifestyle

Sun Life Financial Study Reveals Baby Boomers Need More Flexible Income to Fund Their Retirement Lifestyle

Survey Dispels Old 80% Retirement Income Rule

WELLESLEY, Mass. — A new survey released today by the U.S. division of Sun Life Financial (NYSE:SLF, TSX:SLF) shows that many baby boomers will need more income early in retirement than previously expected. The study also reveals that boomers will need more income flexibility throughout their lives to be able to live their retirement their way.

According to the survey, more than 70 percent of baby boomers expect their income needs to fluctuate greatly throughout retirement with the highest income amount needed in the first five years to fund the active lifestyles they’re planning.

“This survey shatters the old rule that people should plan to live on a fixed 70-80 percent of their pre-retirement income,” said Mary Fay, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Sun Life Financial’s Annuities Division. “Boomers are eager to live life to the fullest, particularly in the early years of their retirement. To make that possible, they will need to create much more flexible retirement income plans that give them access to the money they need, when they need it.”

Baby boomers expect to be far more active in retirement than previous generations. According to those surveyed, more than 80 percent cited domestic and international travel, hobbies, and a new career as the top activities they plan to pursue during the first five years of retirement.

To fund this “retirement spending boom,” the survey indicates boomers plan to draw from a number of possible retirement income sources including Social Security, pensions, and employer-sponsored retirement plans such as 401(k) plans. Half of those surveyed indicated they would rely on rental and investment property income as well as the assets from the sale of a business. Eighty-six percent indicated they plan to earn income from some form of employment.

“It is clear from the survey that financial advisors are in a unique position to help their boomer clients manage retirement income in a way that is flexible enough to meet retirement lifestyles,” said Kevin Hart, President of Sun Life Financial Distributors, Inc. “They also need to help boomers protect their retirement assets. Boomers may need more income early on, but it will be just as important they don’t outlive income as their retirement lifestyle evolves.”

Top Boomer Retirement Activities

Boomers have high expectations for their early retirement years. In the first five years of retirement, boomers indicated they plan to pursue the following lists of activities. Percentages of the same activities drop significantly in mid-retirement (5-10 years into retirement) and late-retirement (10 years or later after retirement).

* 85% Domestic travel

* 83% Hobbies

* 82% International travel

* 81% Begin a new career

* 78% Spend more time with children/grandchildren

* 76% Start a business

* 73% Volunteering

* 72% Take classes or get a degree

* 61% Purchase a second home

* 56% Relocate to a new location

* 54% Assist charitable organizations

About the Survey

The survey was sponsored by the U.S. division of Sun Life Financial and conducted and analyzed by independent research firm Cogent Research, Cambridge, MA. The survey has a sample error rate of -/+ 4.4 %. It was conducted with 1,000 non-retirees and 1,000 retirees aged 50 and over in January 2007. Each participant had over $250,000 in investable assets and was working with a financial professional in making investment decisions.

The full research brief, entitled The Retirement Spending Boom, is available directly from the U.S. division of Sun Life Financial at

About Sun Life Financial

Sun Life Financial is a leading international financial services organization providing a diverse range of protection and wealth accumulation products and services to individuals and corporate customers. Chartered in 1865, Sun Life Financial and its partners today have operations in key markets worldwide, including Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Hong Kong, the Philippines, Japan, Indonesia, India, China and Bermuda. As of December 31, 2006, the Sun Life Financial group of companies had total assets under management of US $374.7 billion.

Sun Life Financial Inc. trades on the Toronto (TSX), New York (NYSE) and Philippine (PSE) stock exchanges under ticker symbol SLF. Visit Sun Life Financial’s website at

SLPC 17159 03/07 (Exp. 03/08)

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