Stock Plan Participants Earmarking Assets for Retirement

September 27, 2012 ( – The majority of company stock plan assets (57%) are being earmarked for eventual investment or retirement savings after participants sell them.

By Rebecca Moore | September 27, 2012
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Just 13% of the assets are being targeted to pay off bills or debt in the future, according to a survey by Fidelity Investments. In years past, the largest allotment of assets was directed toward paying off bills and debt (32%). Just one-quarter of the assets were targeted previously for future investment or retirement savings, the study found.   

It also found participants in stock option, stock purchase and restricted stock plans tend to be aggressive savers. On average, these participants report they are saving 18% of their annual household income using various savings vehicles, including: 

  • 51% into a 401(k) type plan; 
  • 17% into personal savings; 
  • 14% into company stock plans; 
  • 8% into brokerage accounts; 
  • 8% into individual retirement accounts (IRAs); and 
  • 2% into other vehicles. 


“On average, stock plan participants have a very strong savings rate and are using their company stock as an important building block for their retirement portfolio,” said Kevin Barry, executive vice president of Fidelity’s Stock Plan Services business.