Sep 11th 2012
While thousands of smartphone apps have been developed to help people spend money, a new one has been developed to help Americans save: The Ballpark E$timate® iPhone app.
Available online, the Ballpark E$timate has long helped millions of Americans quickly identify approximately how much they need to save to fund a comfortable retirement. Provided by the Choose to Save® financial education program, the Ballpark E$timate takes complicated issues, such as projected Social Security benefits and earnings assumptions on savings, and turns them into language and mathematics that are easy to understand.
The site, created by researchers at the nonpartisan, nonprofit Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI), also includes a Spanish-language version of Ballpark as well as interactive and non-interactive versions. The new EBRI Ballpark E$timate app, developed by Matrix Group International, Inc., and the research team at EBRI, is now available for iPhones and iPads, through the Apple app store on iTunes.
Release of the new retirement savings app stems from findings by the 2012 Retirement Confidence Survey by EBRI and Mathew Greenwald & Associates, Inc., that the use of technology, such as smartphones and tablet computers, is far more prevalent among younger workers than older workers, and that the use of mobile devices to help manage finances is still relatively rare. The new savings app is designed to expand the benefits of the free planning software to a younger audience.
"With a new generation of tools like the free Ballpark E$timate app, a whole new generation of savers should be able to get an earlier start on savings," said Nevin Adams, director of the American Savings Education Council. "This is a way to make it easier to save money, not just spend it."
Adams notes that while retirement isn't top of mind for many younger individuals, the array of free financial planning tools provided by Choose to Save are designed to help people of all ages prepare for life's financial needs. The new app makes the frequently complex topic of saving toward longer-term goals easier to understand - and easier to share - by illustrating the impact of key savings concepts like inflation, investment returns, and the time value of money as well as the contribution of programs such as 401(k)s and Social Security.
Source: September 10, 2012, EBRI press release