Retirement is the main reason people save and invest in only three of ten leading nations - in the U.S., Germany and the U.K., according to a survey commissioned by American Express of Minneapolis, Minn. People in France, Hong Kong, Italy, Singapore and Taiwan save money to have a cushion in case of an emergency, particularly in case of being laid off from their jobs.

The ten-nation survey showed a wide variety of financial concerns across borders. Germans and Japanese are very concerned about high taxes, while Indians worry about having enough money for their children's education.

Taylor Nelson-Sofres, a research company in London, conducted the survey among 10,349 people in July and August.

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