The average account balance among participants in plans for which Fidelity Investments is a record keeper reached $84,300 for the third quarter of 2013, an 11.1% increase from the third quarter of 2012, Charles Kabat, a Fidelity spokesman, confirmed Thursday.
Growth came primarily from a rising stock market, accounting for 72% of the higher balance, while 28% represented contribution by employees and employers.
Fidelity also noted that target-date funds are playing a greater role in participants' accounts. For the third quarter, Mr. Kabat said 33.1% of 401(k) participants had 100% of their accounts in a target-date fund compared to 29.4% for the year-earlier quarter. This percentage has grown steadily, on a yearly basis, since the third quarter of 2003, he said.
“Today's 401(k) plan is profoundly different than it was a decade ago,” James MacDonald, president of Workplace Investing at Fidelity, said in a news release. “Plan design has evolved greatly to reflect the fact that 401(k) plans are often the primary driver of retirement savings for most working Americans.”
Fidelity's 401(k) account balance analysis is based on records from about 21,000 plans, covering 12.6 million participants, for which the firm is a record keeper.