Friday, June 01, 2012

IRA Balances by Age

When left to their own devices, Americans are not very good at saving for retirement. The Employee Benefit Research Institute keeps track of their meager efforts. The latest report, detailing IRA account balances in 2010, reveals that the median balance per account was $17,863, and the median balance per IRA owner was a larger but still modest $25,296 (some individuals own more than one IRA account). By age, the numbers are even more worrisome because they show that even as retirement approaches, IRA balances barely exceed one year's worth of median household income ($49,445 in 2010).

Median IRA balance per owner by age, 2010
Under age 25: $5,782
Aged 25 to 29: $4,769
Aged 30 to 34: $7,229
Aged 35 to 39: $10,819
Aged 40 to 44: $14,745
Aged 45 to 49: $19,329
Aged 50 to 54: $24,505
Aged 55 to 59: $31,762
Aged 60 to 64: $42,998
Aged 65 to 69: $58,965
Aged 70-plus: $56,198

Keep in mind that few Americans even own an IRA. In 2009, only 21 percent of workers aged 21 to 64 had an IRA in their own name, according to EBRI. Among the owners, just 12 percent contributed to their IRA in 2010.

Source: Employee Benefit Research Institute, Individual Retirement Account Balances, Contributions, and Rollovers, 2010: The EBRI IRA Database

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