Transamerica Examines Workers’ Retirement Outlook and Challenges

Transamerica Examines Workers’ Retirement Outlook and Challenges

Almost half of U.S. workers (49 percent) expect their primary source of retirement income to come from self-funded savings, such as a 401(k) or IRA, but the average household amount saved is only $67,000, according to a new report published by the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies.

Titled Emerging From the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Compendium About U.S. Workers’ Retirement Outlook, the report is based on a survey of employed workers at for-profit companies conducted in late 2021 that offers more than 35 key retirement indicators by household income, employment status (full-time, part-time), level of education, caregiver status and race/ethnicity.


  • Current Financial Priorities. Workers’ most often cited financial priority is paying off debt, including 59 percent of full-time time workers. Other frequently cited financial priorities include saving for retirement (56 percent), building emergency savings (40 percent), supporting children (30 percent), and just getting by (27 percent);
  • Retirement Nest Egg. Nearly two in three workers (65 percent) agree that they are currently building a large enough retirement nest egg, including 29 percent who “strongly agree” and 36 percent who “somewhat agree;”
  • Tapping Into Retirement Savings. More than one in three workers (37 percent) have taken a loan, early withdrawal, and/or hardship withdrawal from their 401(k) or similar plan or IRA, including 27 percent who have taken a loan and 26 percent who have taken an early and/or hardship withdrawal; and
  • Debt Is Interfering With My Ability to Save for Retirement.” Over half of workers (53 percent) agree with the statement, “Debt is interfering with my ability to save for retirement,” including 21 percent who “strongly agree” and 32 percent who “somewhat agree.”

Read the full report.

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.