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AARP Closer Look (SM) November 2010 Survey

How do social and economic changes on health, financial and livable communities issues affect Americans age 45 and older? This report from the Closer Look survey from November of 2010 reveals that reported economic hardships are widespread though relatively concentrated among certain age cohorts and race/ethnicity groups.

Key findings include:

  • More than one in five adults 45+ (22%) had their work hours cut, had to take a pay cut, or lost other forms of work-related income. A greater percentage of those age 45-64 (28%) lost work-related income than those 65 and older (9%). The percentage of those reporting losses of work-related income has increased 5 percentage points since November 2009. 
  • More than 4 in 10 adults 45+ (42%) reported having hardships related to health care (such as difficulties paying medical bills, having to postpone needed care or not filling prescriptions/splitting pills).  57% of African American and 52% of Hispanic adults 45+ reported having health care-related hardships compared to 40% of whites. 57% of those that have had to (at least partially) withdraw, or stop contributing to, their retirement savings reported health care-related hardships compared to 26% of those who did not.
  • 24% of adults 45+ said foreclosures were a major problem in their neighborhood. 32% of those earning less than $25K annually said foreclosures were a “major problem” in their community (compared to 20% of those earning more than $25K).

This study was conducted for AARP via telephone by SSRS between November 5 and November 26, 2010 among a nationally representative sample of 1,066 respondents 45 years of age or older.  Of those, 102 respondents were Hispanic and 101 respondents were African American (unweighted). Members of the media should contact AARP Media Relations at 202-434-2560 or All other inquiries about this report should be directed to Gerard Rainville at or (202) 434-6295.