Did you catch yesterday’s Money 911 segment on The Today Show? On yesterday’s show we met Jean, a retired widow from Ohio, who like so many others has some real concerns about her retirement money and what to do next.
Of all the terrible ways in which the recession affected people’s lives, one of the most painful was what the Wall Street meltdown did to our retirement savings. Upward of 50 million Americans are putting aside money for retirement in one way or another, and with most people’s 401(k) accounts and IRAs heavily invested in stocks, virtually everyone took a major hit.
If you’re contributing to a retirement account (and I surely hope you are…), your nest egg probably lost close to a third of its value between the end of 2007 and the beginning of 2009–maybe more.
This has led a lot of people to throw in the towel. In fact, a February 2009 survey by AARP shows that nearly four out of 10 workers said they had cut back the amount of money they were putting into their retirement accounts. Even worse–one in five workers over the age of 45 said they had cut out their retirement contributions entirely!
Giving up like this is one of the worst things anyone hoping to finish rich could do. So if you’ve backed off from your retirement plan, then you need to get back in. Do it now. You owe it to yourself.