More Americans are saving for retirement, but most are saving less money than they were a year ago.
Fewer than 1 in 5 American workers are saving more for retirement now than they were in 2014, according to a new Bankrate.com survey. What's worse is that 10 percent of people haven't contributed anything to their retirement accounts in the past two years, which was the highest level Bankrate has recorded since it began surveying in 2011.
Not all the survey data were bleak. The percentage of workers saving less for retirement has dropped to 14 percent this year from 18 percent in 2012 and the percentage of people saving more ticked up from 18 percent in 2012 to 19 percent now. Greg McBride, Bankrate's chief financial analyst, attributes the slight increase in the percentage of retirement savers to an improving U.S. economy.
Some employers, particularly larger ones, are looking for ways to cut through the retirement savings apathy. They are automatically enrolling workers into employer-sponsored retirement plans like 401(k)s and gradually increasing employee salary contributions to those plans over time (as long as the workers don't opt out of those features).
"The retirement savings burden has increasingly shifted to workers," McBride said. "Automatic enrollment and automatic escalation are two ways employers can help improve savings rates."