Fewer U.S. residents say they are saving for retirement.

The percentage of U.S. adults polled who said they are saving enough for retirement has dropped to 55% this month, from 60% in February 2010, and the percentage who said they are spending less than they earn and saving the difference fell to 71%, from 73%, over that same period.

The percentage who said they are “very concerned” about the impact of the recent Down arrowrecession on their personal finances rose to 49%, from 43%.

America Saves, and the American Savings Education Council (ASEC), Washington, have published these figures in a summary of results from a recent survey of about 1,000 U.S. adults.

The percentage of participants who said they had reduced or eliminated consumer debt held steady at 79%, but the percentage who reported having adequate emergency savings fell slightly, to 70%, from 71%.

Participants who reported having a plan for savings did markedly better at saving than participants with no plan.

Pollsters found, for example, that only 50% of the participants with no plan were able to save; 88% of the participants were saving.

Only 27% of the participants with no saving plan reported saving enough for retirement, compared with 61% of the participants with a plan.

- Warren S. Hersch