“The New Working Woman’s Guide to Retirement Planning: Saving and Investing Now for a Secure Future”



Martha Priddy Patterson
320 pages, $19.95 paper

A recent review in USA Today put Martha Priddy Patterson’s goal succinctly: “‘The New Working Woman’s Guide to Retirement Planning’ is a wake-up call for women.”

Patterson, director of benefits analysis for Deloitte and Touche, wrote this straightforward and easy-to-follow guide to retirement planning for women because she noted several facts:

Only 21 percent of working women over 40 expect to receive, or are receiving, retirement benefits.

Of those women who do receive benefits, most will receive only one-third of those received by their male counterparts.

Women, on average, live six years longer than men.

Women earn 74 cents for every man’s dollar.

Women change jobs every 4.7 years vs. 5.3 years for men (a person typically vests in a company retirement plan after five years).

The list goes on.

“The New Working Woman’s Guide to Retirement Planning” contains four case studies of women workers of different ages and incomes to give readers a clearer idea of how they can best plan for their own retirement. The book also explains how Social Security works, how to take advantage of 401(k) plans and what ERISA (Employer Retirement Income Security Act) means to Roth IRAs. Each chapter concludes with a neatly organized action plan so that right from the start readers can take advantage of sound financial advice. The book includes a worksheet to help readers calculate whether they are saving enough to retire.

The old adage remains true: The sooner you start saving, the less you will need to save.

The director of Wharton’s Pension Research Council, Olivia S. Mitchell, said, “Every woman should read this book.”

—University of Pennsylvania Press

Originally published on January 20, 2000