Dec 18, 2020 - Economy & Business

IRAs now account for more than 1/3 of U.S. retirement assets

Data: Investment Company Institute; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios
Data: Investment Company Institute; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

There was $33.1 trillion tucked away in U.S. retirement assets at the end of the third quarter, accounting for 34% of all Americans' household financial assets, the Investment Company Institute reported this week.

Why it matters: Individual Retirement Accounts now make up more than one-third of all retirement accounts, as millions of Americans have rolled over their 401(k)s and other so-called defined contribution accounts into IRAs, ICI tells Axios.

What we're hearing: "Households often indicate that they rolled over assets to consolidate their retirement accumulations as they progress through their careers and into retirement," ICI senior director of retirement and investor research Sarah Holden tells Axios in an email.

  • "Rollovers have been a large part of the growth story for IRAs, particularly for traditional IRAs."

Of note: "Roth IRAs also have grown as some retirement savers have embraced the Roth tax treatment," Holden adds. "At year-end 2019, Roth IRAs had more than $1 trillion in assets and represented 9% of total IRA assets."

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