Are you sitting down for this? According to a recent survey, one in five American adults have nothing saved for retirement or emergencies. A further 20 percent have squirreled away only 5 percent or less of their annual income to meet certain financial goals. Less than a third of all Americans have saved at least 11 percent or more.
The survey, conducted by Bankrate in late February and early March, is just the latest indication that the U.S. faces a major retirement crisis. Every day, some 10,000 baby boomers turn 65, and they’re reaching retirement in worse financial shape than the previous generation for the first time since Harry Truman was president, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal.
The survey also raises the question of why some working-age adults haven’t been able to take full advantage of a booming U.S. economy and historic bull market to build wealth. Unemployment is near a 50-year low, and wage gains were at their highest level in a decade last month.
According to Bankrate, the number one reason (40 percent) why Americans aren’t saving is that they have too many other expenses. Sixteen percent said they “haven’t gotten around to it,” while the same percentage blamed the low quality of their job.