Nest Eggs on a Post-Downturn Growth Curve

April 13, 2010 ( – A new report finds that Americans’ retirement savings accounts are recovering from their lows during the recession.

Total U.S. retirement assets, which include both defined contribution and defined benefit plans, rose 18% to $9.3 trillion in 2009, up from $7.9 trillion in 2008, a Spectrem news release said. Assets held in DC plans rose 19% to $4.5 trillion, from $3.8 trillion the year before.  As a percentage of all retirement assets, these plans held steady at 49%. 

By themselves, 401(k)s, which account for 71% of all DC assets, rose 20% to $2.3 trillion in 2009, up from $1.9 trillion in 2008. 

“The retirement market bounced back in 2009, recovering nearly all of the recession-driven losses of the previous year,” said Gerald O’Connor, a Director at Spectrem Group, in the news release.

Meanwhile, the number of plan participants seeking advice on how to invest their retirement funds rose to 58% in 2009 from 26% the prior year.

The Spectrem report, “Retirement Market Insights 2010,” is based on data derived from both public and private sources as well as Spectrem surveys. 

More information is available at