Banks and brokerages have been gearing up for it for years. Now an awareness of the "baby boomer retirement" mega-trend is filtering through to research studies aimed at guiding individuals' career plans.
The "retirement planning industry" shows the second-highest projected revenue growth for the coming decade among all industries analyzed by IBISWorld, an industry and market research firm. (VoIP, or voice-over-Internet protocol, came in first.)
IBISWorld estimates industry-wide revenue from retirement planning will soar 134 percent from 2010 through 2019, says InvestmentNews. That's faster than even such fashionable sectors as biotechnology, e-commerce, environmental consulting, video game development, and search engines.
Retirement planning led for a familiar reason: "IBISWorld considered the fact that baby boomers born at the peak of the boom will turn 65 in 2022 and those born at the end of the boom will be 65 in 2029."
All that new retirement business is up for grabs among large banks and brokerage, small firms and independent advisers, with no clear signs who'll benefit most.
The study defines retirement planning as including IRAs, 401Ks, funds and private and public retirement plans. Revenue was defined in terms of contributions plus or minus net investment income or losses, without considering fees. That's an odd and seemingly upwardly biased definition. It sounds equivalent to change in assets under management - and even hedge funds (who surely don't manage all retirement assets) don't get to pocket 100 percent of the growth in assets they manage.
Then again, certain retail brokers do keep more than 100 percent of their clients' asset growth. But we don't want to go there....
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