Single seniors were most likely to have low incomes and limited assets. The study found 52 percent of individuals in this category lived on less than $20,000 annually and died with less than $10,000 in financial assets.
Seniors who were married at the time of retirement but outlived their spouse fared better with only 36 percent falling below those income and asset levels. Individuals who were still married at death seemed to be the most financially secure with only 26 percent living below those levels.
In addition, single individuals had significantly lower annual wealth than those who were married. According to the research, unmarried seniors had a median annual wealth of $165,000. That figure included both current and future Social Security income as well as pensions, home equity and financial assets such as CDs, money market accounts and savings accounts.