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An Uphill Climb: Women Face Greater Obstacles to Retirement Security

Women face tough challenges when preparing for retirement.  Women live longer, have lower earnings, and are more likely to outlive some sources of retirement income than men.  These challenges suggest that women have to prepare even more carefully to ensure that they can live comfortably during retirement. 

This Fact Sheet highlights important differences between men and women in regard to retirement preparedness. Women live longer than men and will spend more years in retirement.  In addition, for various reasons such as caregiving, women will spend more time out of the workforce.  The lower labor force attachment results in fewer women with pensions and lower earnings which, in turn, result in lower Social Security benefits and higher poverty rates at older ages. 

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