Most Americans Not Saving More for Retirement

1-in-10 working Americans haven't contributed to retirement either this year or last

Aug 18, 2015, 08:00 ET from Bankrate

NEW YORK, Aug. 18, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Just 19% of working Americans are saving more for retirement now than they were one year ago, according to a new (NYSE: RATE) report. Fourteen percent are saving less and 55% are saving about the same amount. A startling 10% haven't contributed anything to their retirement accounts this year or last year, this is the highest level seen in previous polls dating to 2011.

While 14% are currently saving less for retirement, this is a vast improvement from 2011 when 29% of Americans were saving less for their golden years. The 2015 figure has slightly improved from 18% in 2012 and 17% in 2013. In terms of the number of Americans saving more, the percentage (19%) has inched higher from 15% in 2011 and 18% in 2012 and 2013.

"With millions of Americans behind in their retirement savings, it is important not only to save, but to save more each year," said Greg McBride, CFA, chief financial analyst. "Even for those saving the maximum, 401k contribution limits increased for 2015, affording the opportunity to put more away for retirement."

The Financial Security Index slipped for a third consecutive month to 101.2. This is the lowest reading since October 2014. Any number above 100 indicates improved financial security compared to one year ago. The Financial Security Index has been above 100 every month since June 2014, a streak of 15 consecutive months.

Feelings of job security rebounded from last month's decline, but readings for each of the other components – savings, debt, net worth, and overall financial situation – dipped. Only savings remains in territory indicative of deterioration versus one year ago.

Women's feelings of financial security turned negative for the first time this year. While men's feelings remain positive, they tied the lowest reading of the year. Both men and women continue to say they feel less comfortable with their savings now as compared to one year ago. Women's comfort level with debt also turned negative this month for the first time since December 2014.

The survey was conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International (PSRAI) and can be seen in its entirety here:

PSRAI obtained telephone interviews with a nationally representative sample of 1,000 adults living in the continental United States. Interviews were conducted by landline phone (500) and cellphone (500, including 287 without a landline phone) in English by Princeton Data Source from August 6-9, 2015. Statistical results are weighted to correct known demographic discrepancies. The margin of sampling error for the complete set of weighted data is plus or minus 3.8 percentage points.

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