Ask a Trust Officer: Longevity

DEAR TRUST OFFICER: I’m turning 65 this year and thinking about retirement.  How long should I plan for?



According to the latest data from the National Vital Statistics Reports (August 2017, reporting on 2014 experience), a male age 65 should expect to live 18 more years (to age 83) and a female 20.6 years (to age 85.6).  Half of 65-year-olds will die sooner, half later.

That tells us nothing about you, of course. How’s your health? Your family history?  You’ll want to take these into account, and you probably should plan for longer than you expect to live.

Here’s another way to look at the numbers from that report.  For every 100,000 men, how many reach age 85?  35,518 men do.  For every 100,000 women, 49,225 reach age 85.  Mortality increases precipitously after that, as shown in the table below.

Number of survivors of 100,000 people

At age Men Women
75 64,066 75,495
80 51,407 64,616
85 35,518 49,225
90 18,649 30,228
95 6,214 12,697
100 1,077 2,974

Source: National Vital Statistics Report, Volume 66 Number 4, August 14, 2017

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