Millennials, For Some Reason, Think They'll Be Millionaires With Early Retirements

Being optimistic about your future? In this economy?

The economy is doing okay right now, and that seems to have really boosted millennial confidence. For a group of people who average $40,000 in student loan debt, their predicted wealth is pretty shocking.

Brokerage firm TD Ameritrade surveyed over 1,500 millennials from around the country to find that over half (53 percent) expect to become millionaires within their lifetime. Half! They also plan to retire at 56 but don’t think they’ll start saving for retirement until they’re 36. But there are a couple of things to consider about this data.

Gender Bias

In actuality, the overblown confidence came from overwhelmingly male respondents — 70 percent of men expected to become or already are millionaires, with only 38 percent of women saying the same. That’s the pay gap at work, baby!

The data wasn’t broken down by race, but if it were, the results would probably mirror the fact that there’s also a race pay gap.


Men also had an earlier average prediction for their retirement: age 53. The retirement stats are almost more unrealistic than the hopeful millionaires because the current national retirement average is 63, and it’s only expected to rise.

Cutting Costs

One thing working in millennial’s favor is that a lot of them don’t expect to have kids or a mortgage, two things that take up a considerable amount of your budget (an understatement, perhaps). One in four millennials said they don’t plan to marry, so no wedding costs, either. Nearly 30 percent said they don’t want to or don’t plan to raise children, and 24 percent said the same about becoming a homeowner.

But on the flip side, 2 out every 10 respondents don’t think they’ll pay off their student loans ever. And one in five still depends on their parents financially — this writer included. But Mom and Dad, if you’re reading this, I only ate out once this week. I also only have $4 in my savings account, but it’s a start, okay?

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