Tooth Fairy Earnings Could Add $20K to Retirement Savings

If today’s 6-year-olds were to invest all the money they receive from the Tooth Fairy, they could be sitting on a collective total of roughly $70 billion by the time they reach 67, according to a new analysis from Delta Dental Plans Association.

That equals $21,000 per child. Delta Dental’s 2015 The Original Tooth Fairy Poll found the Tooth Fairy visited 81% of homes in the United States in 2014, meaning that out of the current 4.1 million 6-year-olds, about 3.35 million received money for lost teeth.                   

The retirement income figure is based on a 6-year-old (the average age for first tooth loss) receiving the national average Tooth Fairy gift of $4.36 (from Delta Dental’s most recent survey of U.S. parents of 6- to 12-year-olds), with 6.5% in-mouth inflation (the typical increase for Tooth Fairy gifts from year to year) for each subsequent tooth, and a 9.6% return on investment based on historic stock market returns (S&P 500 average) per year until they turn 67.

By region, the retirement savings will vary in line with the average 2014 Tooth Fairy gift:

  • Northeast: $20,477 (average 2014 Tooth Fairy gift of $4.16);
  • Midwest: $13,910 (average 2014 Tooth Fairy gift of $2.83);
  • South: $25,362 (average 2014 Tooth Fairy gift of $5.16); and
  • West: $23,004 (average 2014 Tooth Fairy gift of $4.68).

According to Delta Dental’s The Original Tooth Fairy Poll, the average Tooth Fairy gift reached a record high last year, up 24.6% from 2013 when the average gift was $3.50. A recent poll of PLANSPONSOR NewsDash readers found 63% of parents said their children receive(d) between $1.00 and $5.00 per tooth.