While the financial services industry has spent a great deal of time studying the needs and preferences of the Baby Boomers and their Generation Y children, more attention should be paid to Generation X.
In a recent article on industry research group LIMRA’s web site, senior research director Nilufer R. Ahmed said that those between the ages of 33 and 50, namely Gen X, represent "a huge opportunity" for the industry.
While Gen Y outnumbers Gen X in the United States by almost two to one, Ahmed points out that among U.S. households with children under age 18, almost 60% are headed by a member of Gen X compared to just 20% that are headed by a member of Gen Y. "Gen X presents the greatest demand for life insurance for traditional reasons, such as marriage, buying a home and having children," she says, and notes that besides putting their children through school they may also need to help their aging parents.
"Gen X needs our products, services, and support the most," concludes Ahmed. "They started their adult lives at a disadvantage, compared to the Boomers, and many were adversely affected by the Great Recession. Their recovery has started, but they have fewer years ahead of them than Gen Y to plan for their future and save enough. For the financial services industry, now is the time to pay attention to Gen X."