The Average American Couple Only Has $5,000 Saved For Retirement

Robert Donachie | Capitol Hill and Health Care Reporter

The median working-age American couple has just $5,000 saved for retirement, a figure that does not bode well for the long-run financial stability of the nation.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics says the median working age for an American adult is approximately 41.8 years of age for men and 42 years for women.

Less-than-stellar savings is not solely relegated to the younger workers of America. Americans nearing retirement have an average of just $17,000 in their 401(k) plans, MarketWatch reports.

Millennials face their own set of financial woes in the future, as the majority view saving for retirement as a waste of time. Some 42 percent of millennials haven’t even put a dime towards retirement. These facts are even more frightening when recognizing the average college graduating class in 2015 is saddled with over $35,000 in student loan debt.

Scholars note that promoting savings incentivizes long-term economic security for both the individual and for national long-term economic prosperity, Oxford Economics reports.

Vanguard, an American investment management company, suggests that individuals withdraw no more than 3 to 5 percent of their retirement principal per year. If the average American nearing retirement has just $17,000 saved, this would mean a monthly withdrawal of just $48 — an amount nearly equal to the average cost of filling up a 12-gallon tank of gas.

Experts say the best way to calculate how much you will need for retirement is to calculate 70 to 80 percent of your pre-retirement income. While some say people can get by with 60 percent, there are some unknowns to account for like longevity and possible bouts with sickness that could prove costly to treat later on in life.

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