Employees are stressed by retirement planning and debt

On Monday, researchers from the Personal Finance Employee Education Foundation (PFEEF) released data pinpointing the causes of employees’ financial stress. Of those who responded, 22 percent reported retirement planning as most stressful, 21 percent reported debt management, and 15 percent reported budgeting.

Unfortunately, half of respondents had no intention of seeking information about resolving the stressful topic within the next six months. From the PFEEF press release:

According to researchers at PFEEF and TwoMedicine Health & Financial Fitness, asking employees to pinpoint financial topics that cause financial distress does not mean they are ready to change their situations.

Dr. Aimee Prawitz, PFEEF Director of Research, says, “A crucial first step for employers with financial education programs is to help employees identify barriers that are keeping them from getting help with financial worries.”

“Financial struggles may cause significant stressors thereby leading to a diminished state of well-being and even health concerns.” Pete Shatwell, Director, TwoMedicine Health & Financial Fitness.

The 2006 study included 349 employees from Montana and Washington. In addition to information about this study, Dr. Thomas E. Garman offers a wide body of data identifying the need for financial education on the FFEEF Web site; all information on the site is available at no cost.

Kim McGrigg is the former Manager of Community and Media Relations for MMI.