Retirement savings crisis: Americans not confident they can save enough

More Americans doubt they will be able to save enough for retirement than are confident they can reach their savings goals, according to a new study.

Thirty-seven percent of people are not confident they will be able to stash away enough cash, compared with 32 percent who say they can, according to NerdWallet.

Correspondingly, nearly half of Americans (48 percent) don’t think their retirement savings will ever reach $1 million. That’s compared with just 27 percent who think it will.

According to Fidelity, the number of “401(k) millionaires,” or people with at least $1 million in their 401(k) accounts, rose to 168,000 at the end of June, up more than 40 percent over the year prior. The number of “IRA millionaires” hit 156,000 during the same period.

But more than 30 percent of Americans expect to need more than $1 million in retirement, according to NerdWallet.

The Trump administration is looking for ways to help Americans stash more cash away for retirement. The president wrote on Twitter last week that continued outperformance in the stock market would help boost 401(k) account balances “beyond your wildest expectations.”

Republicans are also expected to address savings through their second round of tax legislation, which could hit the House floor for a vote before month’s end.

It remains unclear exactly what Republicans plan to do to help more Americans stash away a larger percentage of their income, but Rep. Kenny Marchant, R-Texas, told The Wall Street Journal that a universal savings account could be included. Contributions to a universal savings account would be taxed, but earnings would grow tax-free and would be easier to withdraw than a traditional 401(k) or other retirement account.

Further, the bill could aim to make it easier to use health savings accounts, an account where an individual contributes pretax dollars for the explicit purpose of spending those funds on future medical expenses.