The best industries for a secure retirement

Published: Tuesday, Aug. 13 2013 11:49 p.m. MDT

Associated Press
A study by Bankrate.com has caused quite a stir among the general public, and possibly some headaches among those in the public sector.

As the Deseret News recently reported, Bankrate reported that the average congressman retires more comfortably than most Americans. In fact, many Americans aren't ready for retirement at all. A study by the Employee Benefit Research Institute conducted this year showed that only 66 percent of all Americans have begun saving for retirement. That leaves 34 percent of American workers without any retirement savings.

Among those who are saving, retirement plans provided by their employers are often the largest helps to their future financial security.

In light of Bankrate's assessment of elected representatives, the Deseret News has compiled a list of some of the best jobs, both public and private, when it comes to retirement security.

  • Oldest first
  • Newest first
  • Most recommended
Diligent Dave
Logan, UT

No job is secure, in a society, even a civilization, like the worldwide civilization/s today that are ALL on declining slope/s. Though, over the past few decades, alarm has been made and remade that there are "too many people in the world", the irony is, actually the opposite is very quickly becoming true.

For example, since the early 1970's, though population has grown in that time dramatically, the U.S., along with most nations with advanced economies, has been (and remains) in a period of sub-replacement birth rates. Women working outside of the home, IMO, is the primary, though not ONLY, cause of this phenomenon. What has caused populations worldwide to grow so dramatically over the past century, as Harvard trained Phd demographer Nick Eberstadt has put it, is "not because people suddenly started breeding like rabbits, but rather, because, they quit dying like flies...", or greatly improved human life longevity due to gains in health and healthcare.

In 2002, the UN Population Division projected that by about 2050, the whole world would likely have a TFR (Total Fertility Rate) of just 1.85 (or 185 children born for every 200 adults), means disaster!

Iron Rod
Salt Lake City, UT

What common thread is present with most of the occupations with good retirements?

It appears to me that they are represented by some type of Union or Association.

With the demise of Unions in this country what does that forcast for the future of retirement plans in this country?

Oh, please!
Saint George, UT

This list and many like it should wake up those thousands of psychology, communications, and sociology majors who face a non-existent, low-paying and dead end job market. Just because those majors are easy doesn't mean they are worth it. You would be better off learning a high-paying trade such as in the electrical, plumbing, auto mechanic and other fields.

Bakersfield, CA

Ditto to "Oh, please" in SG. But our kids don't listen, rack up deep loan debt and think they'll find tenure somewhere...

Wake up and smell the java. It's been simmering on the slow button for decades. Universities still cranking out teachers here, and there ain't money in the coffers to hire them, let alone provide for their retirement. Teachers need to show students the reality of their futures and encourage them to fill the good salary professions.

My husband is always looking to hire mechanical engineers for aerospace, but colleges aren't offering a good product force. When current managers start retiring en masse in 5-10 years, these lib arts college grads are gonna wish they'd trained for the good jobs. But they'll still be paying off loans and possibly already in other fields.

South Jordan, UT

Sorry, Iron Rod, but at the top of the list is the information industtry. No unions, no organization, just an in-demand skill set. It isn't the unions that will secure your retirement; it is your own industry. Be smart and responsible, and understand that YOU are responsible for your future.

Dan Maloy
Enid, OK

What? The military isn't mentioned at all?

A U.S. military retirement is (at a minimum) 50% of your 'base pay' after 20 years. Every year more than 20 and the retirment goes up 2.5%. A 24 year major receives over $52,000 a year in retirement (2013 dollars), plus health insurance and low-fee commissary (grocery store) priveleges for life.

A lietenant colonel, at 28 years, is over $72,000 a year. Make full bird colonel and that goes up even more. By law, officers can retire at up to 75% of their base pay. You could retire after 30 years (at about 52-55 yrs of age) and never 'have to' work again on some officers' pay.

(BTW, a $100,000 annual pension sounds excessive for a police officer or a fireman. Sorry, but why should a low-ranking policeman or fireman, a 'grunt' in the trenches, make more than a 30 year full bird colonel who leads, literally, thousands of troops? Both put themselves in harms way over the years, but $100,000?


Insurance Professional??? I call BS. I owned an insurance agency for 8 years for two different large, national insurance companies. Since I was self-employed, I received no benefits from Corporate and my health insurance was $1,000 a month with crappy coverage. My health insurance was rising faster than my premiums, so I had to close the doors. Some insurance agents do very well. Usually the one's that bought "Daddy's" agency, but the rest are out of the industry three years in. High turnover in this industry. NO BENEFITS!!!!

Salt Lake City, UT

Defined benefit plans are under relentless attack. It is anybody's guess what retirement will look like 10-30 years out. For labor this problem is compounded by the fact that employers are increasingly international and so can whipsaw labor. Labor must organize internationally to protect itself. This will be a titanic struggle, the stakes are high.

I this environment it's hard to pick the "best" career path.

Happy Valley, UT

If this were a weighted list, it would probably list Information Technology as #1-6. There's likely only a modicum of difference between Insurance and the next 20 behind it.
IT is changing so fast that even those not interested are going to have to start working to keep up to some degree. Hopefully those who already are will continue to do well. The unemployment rate in IT looks nothing like the national unemployment numbers.

Wasatch Front, UT

What Marxist and all the LIBS almost never understand is that ultimately workers have to create more value than they are paid. Organizing labor to simply extract more wages and benefits than the value workers are producing simply leads to bankruptcies, both public and private.

So if you want a great retirement, figure out how to do something that is valuable. It will likely take a lot of work, sacrifice and some very long hours. That's why very few do it. It is hard work and it typically takes years. Those who blame "evil, greedy corporations" don't get it, and probably never will...

Farmington, UT

I agree with "carman" and "Z"--if you want to make more money, bring more value to the marketplace. It's a fairly simple equation. How do you bring more value? Zero in on the skills that are valued and learn them. Don't allow yourself to become sidelined as the workplace continues to evolve.

Part of the problem is that people think there is still job security, that somehow if they are loyal to an employer that employer will somehow take care of them. It hasn't been that way for at least 10 years. The only security you have is what you create for yourself by rising to the top of your craft.

The best financial security arises out of following your own dream and creating your own business. The ideal business has leverage, defined as the ability to earn money off the efforts of others. Without leverage, even if you are highly paid, you are only trading time for money, and since no one has more than 24 hours/day, your income is limited. The second key is creating residual income, so that you continue to earn tomorrow off today's efforts. NOW you have financial security!

Iron Rod
Salt Lake City, UT

Z South Jordan

Have you not heard that a great deal of the IT jobs are currently being outsourced to low wage areas such as India? Call a help desk for a problem with your computer and you will probably get the Philipines.

Are their American Information Technology graduates out of work? To get the job done will the IT companies hire the cheapest workers they can find in the world? India has an educated cheap work force in regard to the IT industry.

Kings Court
Alpine, UT

Carman, the marxists and the libs actually do create more value than they are paid, it is just that the fascists and conservatives take it all for themselves--hence, the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.

Farmington, UT

Iron Rod, to what Union do members of the US Congress belong? What did unions do for the auto industry and the City of Detroit?

I've worked for a union building contractor and the union steward was always the guy who yelled the loudest and was the most difficult person with which to work. The concept of getting more egg production from the chicken by strangling the hen was their paramount objective, not the health of the employer. It seemed they thought they'd just go work for another company if the one they sank did indeed drown.

Unions were needed when children were working 70 hour weeks in coal mines---no argument there, but when they can shut down a project on a whim they have too much self-interest that slams the owner of a new building and the contractor.

Unions don't adjust well to changing economic circumstances---just look at educators to see that. Always feeding at the public trough, they pay $100 a month for family health insurance and carp about too many kids in the class, too much stress, etc etc.

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