Financial advisors and planners know the issue all too well, as do retirement experts: There is a pressing need for Americans to contribute to a 401(k), individual retirement account or some sort of structured, tax-deferred account to take them through their post-employment years.
Yet recent government statistics reveal quite the shocker: Just 53 percent of the civilian workforce participates in or contributes to a retirement plan, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. In the private industry subset, it’s even lower: 48 percent. Among the two major civilian categories surveyed by the BLS, only one, state and local government workers, shows healthy participation rates at 81 percent.
Low-income and part-time workers are at particular risk, because in many cases, they don’t haveaccess to a retirement plan through their employer, says David Stone, CEO of Aria Retirement Solutions in San Francisco.