Even more shocking, the median retirement account balance of working households is only $3,000. For those nearing retirement, that balance is a meager $12,000. With the average projected savings needed to retire comfortably hitting at least $1 million, people are blissfully unware that they're staggeringly behind.
Unfortunately, the retirement strategy of delaying planning is the path of least resistance, chosen by millions of Americans. Not knowing provides false comfort that we can live in the moment and still make it out OK financially in the end. Yet it also perpetuates the looming prophecy that no matter how we live today, we're not going to be able to save enough for retirement.
Let's use these numbers as a wake-up call. It's the duty of those in the financial services industry to ensure that the next generation doesn't gamble away their future as they start to build their wealth.