The share of U.S. families with a member participating in any employment-based retirement plan declined during the period from 1992 to 2010, according to the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI).
The participation rate rose from 38.8% in 1992 to 40.6% in 2007, but then fell to 37.9% in 2010. “Americans lost a tremendous amount of wealth between 2007 and 2010, and the percentage of families that participated in an employment-based retirement plan and/or owned an IRA decreased as well,” said Craig Copeland, EBRI senior research associate.
At the same time, the ownership of 401(k) plans has increased even as IRA ownership has fallen. EBRI reports that ownership of 401(k)-type plans among families participating in a retirement plan zoomed from 31.6% in 1992 to 79.5% in 2007, and then jumped further to 82.1% by 2010. But the percentage of families owning an IRA or Keogh retirement plan (for the self-employed) dipped from 30.6% in 2007 to 28.0% in 2010. All told, the percentage of families with a retirement plan from a current employer, a previous employer’s defined contribution plan or an IRA/Keogh fell from 66.2% in 2007 to 63.8% in 2010.