Press Release

ALM Releases Fourth Annual 401(k) Plan Benchmark Report

Year over Year, 401(k) Plans Grew to $5.3 Trillion in Plan Assets in 2017

New York, NY – May 21, 2019 – Judy Diamond Associates, a division within ALM, has published the results of the fourth annual 401(k) Plan Benchmark Report. This in-depth analysis and report examines approximately 520,000 active 401(k) plans with at least $3,000 in plan assets.

This data comes from the 2017 plan year, the most recent data reported, and reviews of 27 distinct industries covering about 66 million eligible workers, of whom 45 million are actively participating, with an additional 14 million retirees maintaining a plan balance. The value of all 401(k) accounts in 2017 grew by about $800 billion, to a record $5.3 trillion in plan assets.

The view 2019 401(k) Plan Benchmark Report visit:

“This year’s report shows a notable increase in 401(k) contributions from both employees and employers,” said Eric Ryles, Vice President of Customer Solutions at ALM. “Between this increase in total contributions and continued adoption of automatic enrollment, more U.S. workers are on a path towards a successful retirement than ever before.”

Highlights from the 2019 report include:

  • The growth in Employee and Employer contributions of 8% outpaced the growth in the number of new participants, which only grew by 4%. This suggests an overall increase in how much is being saved for retirement.
  • The median account balance is up by $5,355, to $59,937, while the average account balance comes in at about $105,000.
  • More companies are offering Automatic Enrollment, which is now the default on 10% of all plans, up from 8.4% last year and 7.1% in 2016.
  • The five industries with the best 401(k) plans were: Certified Public Accountants, Financial Advisory, Legal, Dental, and Insurance – no change from 2016.
  • The five industry groups with the most improved 401(k) plans were: Financial and Insurance Services, Banking, Engineering, Construction, and Manufacturing.
  • The number of new 401(k) plans declined year over year by 3%, to 37,919.

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