For once, it’s the whippersnappers who are behaving more wisely. At least when it comes to saving, Generation X and Generation Y workers are more diligent than their peers.

Around one-quarter of the younger generations of workers — 25% of Generation Y and 23% of Generation X — are funding both their 401(k) or 403(b) plans and their IRAs, according to a survey conducted by TD Ameritrade. For Boomers, the number is 16%, and for the pre-Boomer generation, known as the Matures, the number dwindles to 9%.

“The good news is that many working Americans, especially those who are young, are taking advantage of saving for retirement in a tax-free environment through options like an IRA, despite a tough economy,” said Carrie Braxdale, managing director of investor services for TD Ameritrade. Those who are not funding these accounts on a regular basis are missing opportunities for tax deferral, however, she said.

A little over two-thirds of Boomers — 68% —are also not taking full advantage of the “catch-up contribution,” which allows them to contribute an extra $5,500 to an employer-sponsored plan, the survey found. About half responded they weren’t doing this because they didn’t have the means, but 21% replied that they were unaware of this option.

Danielle Reed writes for Financial Planning.



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