(The Hill) — Members of Generation X don’t have much stored in savings, according to a new report from the National Institute on Retirement Security (NIRS).
The report found that the “forgotten generation” faces a “dismal” retirement future. The typical Gen X household — with those born between 1965 and 1980 — has around $40,000 saved for retirement, while the bottom half of savers only have a few thousand banked.
“Generation X grew up in the shadow of the postwar economic boom that so greatly benefitted their generation predecessors, the Baby Boomers,” the report says. “Many in Generation X spent their formative years as the United States grappled with the oil crisis, ‘stagflation,’ and a growing sense of disillusionment following the Watergate crisis.”
Slightly over half of Gen-Xers have employer-sponsored retirement plans, the report found. Most members — regardless of race, gender or income — are also failing to meet retirement savings targets.
Researchers blame an increase in college debt and bad luck in wider economic conditions for the lapse. They also note the rapid decline of pension plans, putting the burden of retirement planning more onto the retiree instead of an employer.
About 18 percent of Gen Xers have no retirement savings, the report states.
The NIRS advocates for additional structured retirement plans to make up for the decrease in pensions over time.
“Accruing savings takes time, and Social Security alone won’t provide enough retirement income,” NIRS research director Tyler Bond said in a statement. “So it’s critically important that we change course quickly. The status quo means we are looking at elder poverty for many Gen-Xers and pressure on their families for support.”
Gen X isn’t the only generation that could face retirement trouble. U.S. Census data found that nearly half of Baby Boomers and more than half of all workers don’t have any retirement savings.
Opinion polling released in May also found that less than half of Americans expect to live a comfortable retirement, a decrease from previous marks.