The lack of wealth for large shares of Americans is striking.

The median net worth for the bottom 25 percent of American families is only $310. One of the leading factors behind persistent wealth inequality is the lack of access to well-designed retirement savings programs for a large share of American workers.

Current federal retirement savings policy simply wasn’t designed to encourage and reward participation for those most in need of building wealth. The proof? The median retirement savings balance for the bottom 50 percent of American families is $0.

No wonder 82 percent of American voters are concerned that retirement security is a problem for the country.

And one of the main reasons: federal savings policy relies on tax deductions, which overwhelmingly skew towards more affluent taxpayers. Those in greatest need are the least likely to have access to a quality retirement plan and the least likely to benefit from federal incentives to save.

The Stats
Fig. 01
Half of U.S. families have no retirement accounts, according to the Federal Reserve.
Fig. 02
In 2016, only 41% of Black families and 35% of Hispanic families had any retirement savings at all.