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Message Subject THE ECONOMY & YOU # (Daily Updated Videos & Articles)
Poster Handle RoXY
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U.S. Retirement Assets Declined by $1.4 Trillion
By Eamon Murphy

Reteriment AccountsThe total value of Americans' retirement assets stood at $17 trillion at the end of September - a drop of 7.5% from the record high of $18.4 trillion recorded on June 30, 2011.

That's according to a report by the Investment Company Institute, a national association of asset managers. The $1.4 trillion decline can be attributed in part to the troubles of the stock market: The S&P 500 lost 13.9% during the third quarter. There was a slight silver lining to this threatening cloud: Retirement account balances took less of a hit than stock indexes, because of asset diversification and continuing contributions to retirement savings plans.

The nation's individual retirement accounts held $4.6 trillion at the end of the third quarter, which represents a decline of 8.5% from the end of the second quarter. Defined contribution plan assets dropped 7.5% during the same period, and government pension plans - federal, state, and local - fell 7.7%.

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