Retirement accounts lose trillions in stock rut

FAN Editor

When investors get their quarterly 401(k) statements in the next few weeks they’ll be hit with some bad news. 

The S&P 500, the broadest measure of U.S. stocks, is down 21%, the Nasdaq nearly 30% and the Dow 16% so far this year, and Americans are seeing the value of their retirement accounts dwindle along with the drops.


Stock market declines have pummeled the retirement accounts of Americans in the first half of 2022. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images / Getty Images)

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
SP500 S&P 500 3764.79 +89.95 +2.45%
I:DJI DOW JONES AVERAGES 30530.25 +641.47 +2.15%
I:COMP NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX 11069.30234 +270.95 +2.51%

Alicia Munnell, director of the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, wrote in a blog post this week that retirement plans have collectively lost upwards of $3 trillion since the beginning of January.

According to Munnell’s latest data, 401(k) plan participants have lost about $1.4 trillion from their accounts and IRAs have lost $2 trillion since the end of 2021. 


Main Street is feeling it, too.

One woman told FOX Business her 401(k) has “been decimated” to the point that she is now wondering if her plans for starting her golden years might need to be delayed.

stock trader Wall Street

A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange NYSE in New York, the United States, June 16, 2022. (Photo by Michael Nagle/Xinhua via Getty Images / Getty Images)

“It’s horrible, I mean, I was thinking I might be retiring, you know, in the next year or two,” she said. “And now, I don’t know. I don’t know when I can do that.”

“They’re not doing too good right now,” another man said of his investments. “We’ve been losing a lot of money.”


Multiple people told FOX Business they are scared to even take a peek at where their accounts stand. 

stock trader

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange NYSE in New York, the United States, June 16, 2022.  (Photo by Michael Nagle/Xinhua via Getty Images / Getty Images)

“We’ve got a [Thrift Savings Plan], a 401, a 529,” a second woman explained. “I don’t want to look at it.” She said the last time she glanced at her husband’s TSP it was down $200,000.

The losses coupled with inflation sitting at a 40-year high, means Americans are hemorrhaging money. That has also caused some people to make tough decision regarding retirement.


“It’s been painful,” another person said. “I honestly had to take out some funds out of my 401(k) to, you know, support myself and my family with the inflation and everything else that’s happening.” 

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