Participation in Employer Sponsored Retirement Plans Falls

One big trend is: no job, no 401(k). But even among the employed, participation is down.

More evidence that Americans aren't saving enough for their retirement: Workers' participation in 401(k)s is down, both in absolute terms and as a share of the workforce. After hitting a high of 54.6 million full-time workers in 2000, participation slipped to 48.4 million last year, according to research by the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI).

The number is expected to continue to drop. By 2012, only about 50% of workers will be taking part in the employer sponsored plans, down from 54.4% this year and 59.8% in 2000.

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Karen Mracek
Associate Editor, The Kiplinger Letter