The Price of Leaving 401(k) Money Behind

Many baby boomers have worked for at least six employers during their career. Leaving 401(k) funds dormant can be costly.

Closeup view of investment portfolio.
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The average baby boomer has worked for six different employers over the course of their career, not counting jobs before age 24, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That's a lot of opportunities for retirement savings to be overlooked or lost. "People tend to forget that they have old 401(k) plans from past jobs," says Amie Agamata, a certified financial planner based in San Diego and president-elect of NexGen, the Financial Planning Association's group for new and aspiring financial planners.

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Contributing Writer, -

Katherine Reynolds Lewis is an award-winning journalist, speaker and author of The Good News About Bad Behavior: Why Kids Are Less Disciplined Than Ever – And What to Do About It. Her work has appeared in The Atlantic, Fortune, Medium, Mother Jones, The New York Times, Parents, Slate, USA Today, The Washington Post and Working Mother, among others. She's been an EWA Education Reporting Fellow, Fund for Investigative Journalism fellow and Logan Nonfiction Fellow at the Carey Institute for Global Good. Residencies include the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and Ragdale. A Harvard physics graduate, Katherine previously worked as a national correspondent for Newhouse and Bloomberg News, covering everything from financial and media policy to the White House.