NEW YORK, Aug. 19, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Only 18% of working Americans are saving more for retirement now than they were one year ago, according to a new Bankrate.com (NYSE: RATE) report. Seventeen percent are saving less and 54% are saving about the same amount.
Bankrate commissioned similar surveys in August 2011 and August 2012. This year's results are virtually identical to last year's. There has been some improvement since 2011, when 29% of working Americans were saving less for retirement than they were in 2010.
Employed Americans between the ages of 50 and 64 are the most likely of all age brackets to be saving less this year than last."This is troubling considering the availability of catch-up contributions for those 50 and up, as well as the higher 2013 contribution limits for all eligible IRA and 401(k) contributors," said Greg McBride, CFA, Bankrate.com's senior financial analyst. Upper-middle-income households are another trouble spot: 21% are saving less for retirement than they were last year and only 14% are saving more. Overall, the Bankrate.com Financial Security Index is down for a second straight month, but at 100.5, it is clinging to a level above 100 that indicates improved financial security versus one year ago. The Index has been above 100 for six consecutive months. Readings slipped on all five components in August (job security, net worth, debt, savings and overall financial situation). Four of the five, however, are still showing improvement over the past year. Savings remains the weak link, with those saying they're less comfortable outnumbering those that are more comfortable by a margin of nearly two-to-one. Consumers have voiced negative sentiment on savings in every month since polling began in Dec. 2010. Following this month's disappointing unemployment report, job security among the highest-income households (annual income greater than $75,000) turned negative compared with one year ago. The survey was conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International (PSRAI) and can be seen in its entirety here: