How Do American Pension Plans Stack Up Against the Rest of the World?



As more Americans work longer and struggle to save for retirement, it makes you wonder how other countries are doing. Have they got it all figured out? Are Americans missing out on a great plan that would provide more security for our seniors? As you’ll find out, there is no such thing as a perfect retirement plan. While some may be a bit better than others, every country has its struggles. Curious about how the U.S. compares to other countries? Here’s a look at a few retirement plans from around the world. 

United Kingdom 

The U.K. put an end to fixed retirement in 2011, preventing employers from forcing their staff to quit just because they were 65 or older. If you’re a male who was born before December 6, 1953, you can begin drawing a state pension at 65, while women born after April 5, 1950, but before December 6, 1953, can also draw a state pension. A new proposal by the U.K. government could increase the pension age to 67, mainly because of longer life expectancies. The U.K. also allows workers to delay claiming their state pension, making some eligible for extra state pension funds or a lump-sum payment when they do decide to claim it. Interested in how the U.K. is doing when it comes to saving for retirement? A 2013 HSBC Bank Survey showed the average retirement savings in the U.K. is about $122,000 for men and $88,425 for women. Those who had financial plans in place and listened to the guidance of a financial planner averaged quite a bit more at $205,213. 


Aussies refer to their Social Security program as Age Pension. To qualify, you need to be at least 65 and meet the ten-year qualifying Australian residence requirements, and factors such as income and assets impact how much pension a worker will get. Beginning July 1, 2017, the Age Pension qualifying age will increase to 65 1/2 and will continue to rise by six months every two years, reaching 67 by July 1, 2023. Australian citizens are required to put away 9 percent of their salaries into a superannuation account. A report titled Rise of the Grudge Workforce released in December by Suncorp Superannuation predicts the number of Australians working after age 65 will rise by 52 percent over the next ten years. The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia calculates that a retiree now needs $430,000, or $510,000 for couples, to enjoy retirement, according to Hub Pages. However, Suncorp statistics show that at least one-third of Aussie baby boomers have less than $100,000 in their superannuation.