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Women and aging

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More than six in 10 women age 45 and older say they are financially prepared to enjoy their older years, but an equal number have no long-term spending plan for retirement, a new study says.

The survey, “Looking at Act II of Women’s Lives: Thriving and Striving from 45 On,” was conducted by Roper Public Affairs and sponsored by the Hartford.

Nine in 10 respondents say they plan to use social security as part of their retirement plan, and while almost three in four women say they have a few thousand dollars available for an emergency, when asked where it would come from, more than one in five say they don’t know, the study says.

Nine in 10 women surveyed say they are doing all they can to stay healthy, but one in three say they sometimes forego needed prescriptions or doctor visits because of high healthcare costs.

Almost three in 10 says caring for others prevents them from having the time to care for themselves, and almost six in 10 say they would exercise more if they had a partner to join them.

Almost two in three women over 45 say they are happier now than at any other point in their lives and two in three say older years are a time for pursuing dreams, the study says.

The study was released in conjunction with the launch of the AARP Foundation Women’s Leadership Circle, a group created to leverage philanthropic resources of women as they age.

Based on the findings of the survey, the Leadership Circle plans to create a “socialization and exercise” program designed to help women exercise in partnership with other women.

It also plans to launch an effort to encourage women to sign up for 401(k) retirement plans through automatic enrollment.

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