Failing to Save Enough


Many of the members of the Boomer generation believe that they have failed to save enough for retirement, and there is good evidence that this is true. Declines in defined benefit plans and the impact of the Great Recession are significant trends affecting retirement savings for this generation.

    • Two-thirds of middle-income Boomers feel they are behind where they expected to be at this point in their lives in terms of financial readiness for retirement.
    • Half of middle-income Boomers are not confident that they have saved enough to live comfortably in retirement. Only 1 in 10 feel confident about the adequacy of their retirement savings. (CSR, 2011a)

Failing to Save Adequately While Working

    • Less than half of all workers participate in an employer sponsored savings plan (77% of those eligible to participate) and only 40% have an IRA. (Willett, 2008)
    • More than 1 in 3 workers in 2008 had savings (retirement plus other) of less than $10,000. Those with savings of $250,000 or more represented only 12% of workers in 2008. (Willett, 2008)
    • More than half of middle-income Boomers have saved less than $100,000 for retirement. One-fifth have saved less than $10,000. (CSR, 2011a)
    • Only 1 in 5 Americans say they are saving for retirement by contributing to an Individual Retirement Account (IRA), according to a survey by TIAA-CREF, a leading financial services provider. (TIAA-CREF, 2012)
    • 14% of middle-income Boomers do not have any type of retirement account. (CSR, 2011a)

Failing to Adjust to Reductions or Elimination of Defined Benefits

    • Nearly 60% of those born between 1936 and 1940 have defined benefit plans. 50% of those retiring now have defined benefit pensions, and only 44% of those retiring approximately 20 years will have them. This affects retirement security. (Green & Painter, 2012)


Inability of Investments to Recover from the Great Recession

    • Two out of three middle-income Americans age 47 to 65 have experienced a decline in the value of their retirement accounts since 2008; one in three of those have not seen any rebound in value as of March 2011. (CSR, 2011a)