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Retirement Savings At 2004 Levels, Baby Boomer “Culture” to Blame

The retirement savings of baby boomers has “barely budged” over the last eight years, according to the Boston College Center for Retirement Research. It more resembles a flat line than any upward movement, the center finds, with the average balance for Americans’ retirement accounts being $42,000. 

BC’s researchers call the data “sobering,” as the average balance has fallen from $45,000 in 2004 to the slightly lower figure today. 


“There’s more bad news…” BC writes in its Squared Away blog. “…the value of other financial assets such as bank savings accounts dropped in half, to $18,000. And hardship withdrawals from 401(k)s have increased, to more than 2 percent of plan participants, from 1.5 percent in 2004.”

While the housing crash is partly to blame for the low retirement figures, baby boomer culture is likewise a culprit, BC says. 

Read the Squared Away blog.

Written by Elizabeth Ecker