Retirement & Financial Planning Report

As more of the responsibility for financing retirement shifts from employers to employees, it is increasingly important for workers to save aggressively in work-based retirement savings programs and through IRAs, according to a report from the Employee Benefit Research Institute.

It found that the percentage of families with any type of employment-based retirement plan from a current employer dropped from 38.8 to 36.2 percent over 1992-2013.


However, it cited positive trends in more recent data covering the four years through 2013, showing that ownership of an employment based retirement savings plan by heads of households is holding about steady at about 78 percent, as is the percentage of families owning IRAs, at about 28 percent.

In addition, the median account balance–the point where half are above and half are below–increase to $59,000 in 2013, up from $23,000 in 1992 and $38,600 in 2001.

“Individual account retirement plan assets were a clear majority of families’ total financial assets (among those owning such plans): 70.3 percent in 2013 at the median, unchanged from 2010. Across all demographic groups in 2013, these assets’ share at the median of total financial assets was at least 49.2 percent (when these accounts were owned),” it said.

“The increase in IRA wealth is expected to continue in the future, as more workers will be in defined contribution plans and will be in them for a longer period of their working lives than in the past,” it added.