When it comes to personal and retirement savings, millennials are firmly in the middle of the pack compared to other generations.
Millennials (ages 25 to 40) have an average of $51,300 in personal savings, while their retirement accounts have an average balance of $63,300. That's according to Northwestern Mutual's 2021 Planning & Progress Study, which surveyed more than 2,000 American adults.
Gen Xers (ages 41 to 56) are slightly ahead of their younger counterparts, with an average of $67,100 in their personal savings and $98,900 put away for retirement. Both generations trail well behind baby boomers (ages 57 to 75), who have an average of $102,400 in personal savings and $138,900 in their retirement accounts.
The adults of gen Z, the youngest generation whose age range is between 6 and 24, have an average of $35,900 in personal savings and $37,000 saved for retirement.
On the whole, the survey found that Americans' average personal savings have grown 10% year over year, from $65,900 in 2020 to $73,100 in 2021. Retirement savings have jumped 13% from $87,500 to $98,800.
In order to have enough for a comfortable retirement, retirement-plan provider Fidelity recommends having the equivalent of your salary saved by 30, four times your salary saved by 40, six times your salary saved by 50 and eight times your salary saved by 60.
That means a millennial earning the median income in the U.S. of $34,103, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, should have about $34,000 saved by 30 and $136,000 saved by 40. The generation's $63,300 in retirement savings puts them on track if they are in their early 30s and earn close to that amount.
Members of Gen X earning the median U.S. income should aim to have around $204,000 in savings by 50. With an average of $98,900 in retirement savings, this generation appears to be trailing experts' recommendations.
Baby boomers earning the median income in the U.S. should aim to have around $272,000 in the bank by 60, according to Fidelity's guidelines. Their generational average of $138,900 is well behind that amount.
It is also important to remember that many Gen Xers and baby boomers make much more than the median amount.
The survey also found that more than half of Americans say they're in financial recovery mode after the pandemic put millions out of work and onto government aid. The good news: 90% of those respondents believe they will make a full financial recovery to pre-pandemic levels.
"We're seeing a nation still reeling from the financial instability that the pandemic has dealt, but there's also evidence that a promising number of people are on their way back," Christian Mitchell, executive vice president and chief customer officer at Northwestern Mutual said in a statement.
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