Transamerica: 39 Percent of Workers Tapped Retirement Accounts During COVID

Transamerica: 39 Percent of Workers Tapped Retirement Accounts During COVID

While 79% of employed workers are saving for retirement, 39% of them said they tapped their retirement accounts during COVID, including 29% who took a loan and 27% who claimed an early and/or hardship withdrawal. Total savings in household retirement accounts is $65,000 (estimated median).

That’s according to new research released by the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies® (TCRS), titled Emerging From the COVID-19 Pandemic: The Retirement Outlook of the Workforce. As part of TCRS’ 22nd Annual Retirement Survey, one of the largest and longest-running surveys of its kind, the study delves into the impacts of the pandemic, including the health and financial well-being and retirement outlook of the workforce.

“Without doubt, the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the workforce and the employment of many workers. Employment setbacks often trigger financial setbacks that can easily threaten people’s ability to achieve a secure retirement,” said Catherine Collinson, CEO and president of Transamerica Institute and TCRS.

Survey highlights:

  • 36% of workers were unemployed for various reasons at some point during the pandemic, and 38% experienced employment-related impacts ranging from reductions in hours and pay to layoffs and furloughs;
  • 63% of employed workers indicate their financial situation has stayed the same amid the pandemic, while 22% say it worsened; and
  • 68% of self-employed workers are saving for retirement, and they started saving at age 29 (median). Among them, 79% are saving in one or more types of tax-advantaged retirement account, with a traditional or Roth IRA being the most common (44 percent).

Published by

Darryl Hicks

Darryl Hicks is Vice President of Communications for the National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association. In this capacity, Hicks writes for NRMLA's publications, manages the association's web sites and social media accounts, assists committees and the Board of Directors, and manages the Certified Reverse Mortgage Professional designation. Prior to joining NRMLA in 1999, Hicks spent three years in the Washington, D.C. bureau for National Mortgage News.