Happy times are here again—sort of.
The analysis, widely considered a benchmark of savers and the industry’s overall health due to the sheer number of accounts and plan assets held at the Boston-based firm, found the average account stood at $80,900 at the end of the first quarter. It represents an 8.4% increase over one year prior when the average balance stood at $74,600 and 75% growth since the market low during the first quarter of 2009, when it dropped to $46,200.
Fidelity counts “continued contributions from the employee and employer as well as the strong equity markets” for the overall gains.
New analysis of 401(k) accounts of pre-retirees (age 55 or older) who had an employment history of 10 years or more with their current employer—and most vulnerable during the last market downturn given their short timeframe to retirement—showed very strong growth over the last four years. Average balance for this group reached $255,000 by the end of the first quarter, nearly double since the market low during the first quarter of 2009 when their balance dipped to $130,700.