Your "golden years" may not be so golden.
The majority of Americans (75 percent) nearing retirement age had less than $30,000 in their retirement accounts in 2010. For the poorest Americans in the 50-to-64-age bracket, the average amount saved for retirement was $16,034.
The lack of nest egg savings could become an acute crisis in the U.S. and should force a reexamination of the nation's retirement system, says Teresa Ghilarducci, a professor of economics at The New School.
In a recent New York Times Op-Ed, Ghilarducci argues that the current retirement savings model has failed middle-class Americans. The "do-it-yourself" pension system — aka 401(k) plans — that replaced traditional pension packages 30 years ago mistakenly assumed that individuals without investment experience could "reap the same results as professional investors and money managers," she writes.
In an interview with The Daily Ticker, she says individuals "were asked to do what they really couldn't do. Not because they're irresponsible, not because they didn't plan well, not because they didn't have enough financial literacy. That system asked humans to do what they just can't do — anticipate the future."