Retirement savers with 401(k) accounts have seen a big bounce since the recession, according to Fidelity Investments, as rising markets pushed the average balance to a record $80,900 at the end of the first quarter of the year.
That marks an 8.4 percent increase from a year ago and 75 percent growth since the market’s low during the first quarter of 2009. Back then, the average balance plunged to $46,200. The recent gains are a result of employees continuing to contribute their own money to their accounts, as well as improved investment returns.
An analysis of retirement savers age 55 and older, who’ve been with the same employer for a decade, found an average balance of $255,000 – nearly double their average balances in 2009, Fidelity said. The Boston-based investment firm looked at those nearing retirement because they were “most vulnerable during the last market downturn given their short timeframe to retirement.”