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Release: Quarterly Retirement Market Data

Retirement Assets Total $32.3 Trillion in Third Quarter 2022

Washington, DC, December 15, 2022 - Total US retirement assets were $32.3 trillion as of September 30, 2022, down 4.5 percent from June 30, 2022. Retirement assets accounted for 30 percent of all household financial assets in the United States at the end of September 2022.

US Total Retirement Market Assets
Trillions of dollars, end-of-period, selected periods
2022 Q3 Retirement Figure 1

e Data are estimated.

Note: For definitions of plan categories, see Table 1 in “The US Retirement Market, Third Quarter 2022.” Components may not add to the total because of rounding.

Sources: Investment Company Institute, Federal Reserve Board, Department of Labor, National Association of Government Defined Contribution Administrators, American Council of Life Insurers, and Internal Revenue Service Statistics of Income Division

Assets in individual retirement accounts (IRAs) totaled $11.0 trillion at the end of the third quarter of 2022, a decrease of 5.3 percent from the end of the second quarter of 2022. Defined contribution (DC) plan assets were $8.9 trillion at the end of the third quarter, down 5.0 percent from June 30, 2022. Government defined benefit (DB) plans—including federal, state, and local government plans—held $7.2 trillion in assets as of the end of September 2022, a 2.9 percent decrease from the end of June 2022. Private-sector DB plans held $3.0 trillion in assets at the end of the third quarter of 2022, and annuity reserves outside of retirement accounts accounted for another $2.1 trillion.

Retirement Assets by Type
Billions of dollars, end-of-period, 2022:Q2–2022:Q3
2022 Q3 Retirement Figure 2

e Data are estimated.

Sources: Investment Company Institute and Federal Reserve Board

Defined Contribution Plans

Americans held $8.9 trillion in all employer-sponsored DC retirement plans on September 30, 2022, of which $6.3 trillion was held in 401(k) plans. In addition to 401(k) plans, at the end of the third quarter, $515 billion was held in other private-sector DC plans, $1.1 trillion in 403(b) plans, $350 billion in 457 plans, and $714 billion in the Federal Employees Retirement System’s Thrift Savings Plan (TSP). Mutual funds managed $3.8 trillion, or 61 percent, of assets held in 401(k) plans at the end of September 2022. With $2.2 trillion, equity funds were the most common type of funds held in 401(k) plans, followed by $1.1 trillion in hybrid funds, which include target date funds.

401(k) Plan Assets
Billions of dollars, end-of-period, selected periods
2022 Q3 Retirement Figure 3

Note: Components may not add to the total because of rounding.

Sources: Investment Company Institute and Department of Labor

Individual Retirement Accounts

IRAs held $11.0 trillion in assets at the end of the third quarter of 2022. Forty-three percent of IRA assets, or $4.8 trillion, was invested in mutual funds. With $2.6 trillion, equity funds were the most common type of funds held in IRAs, followed by $944 billion in hybrid funds.

IRA Market Assets
Billions of dollars, end-of-period, selected periods
2022 Q3 Retirement Figure 4

e Data are estimated.

Note: Components may not add to the total because of rounding.

Sources: Investment Company Institute, Federal Reserve Board, American Council of Life Insurers, and Internal Revenue Service Statistics of Income Division

Other Developments

Retirement entitlements include both retirement assets and the unfunded liabilities of DB plans. Under a DB plan, employees accrue benefits to which they are legally entitled and which represent assets to US households and liabilities to plans. To the extent that pension plan assets are insufficient to cover accrued benefit entitlements, a DB pension plan has a claim on the plan sponsor.

As of September 30, 2022, total US retirement entitlements were $39.2 trillion, including $32.3 trillion of retirement assets and another $6.9 trillion of unfunded liabilities. Including both retirement assets and unfunded liabilities, retirement entitlements accounted for 36 percent of the financial assets of all US households at the end of September.

Unfunded liabilities are a larger issue for government DB plans than for private-sector DB plans. As of the end of the third quarter of 2022, unfunded liabilities were 48 percent of benefit entitlements for state and local government DB plans, 41 percent of benefit entitlements for federal government DB plans, and 19 percent of benefit entitlements for private-sector DB plans.

US Total Retirement Entitlements
Trillions of dollars, end-of-period, 2022:Q3
2022 Q3 Retirement Figure 5

e Data are estimated.

Note: For definitions of categories, see Tables 1 and 2 in “The US Retirement Market, Third Quarter 2022.”

Source: Investment Company Institute and Federal Reserve Board

The quarterly retirement data tables are available at “The US Retirement Market, Third Quarter 2022.”

Technical Notes

The Investment Company Institute’s total retirement market estimates reflect revisions to previously published estimates.

The latest estimates incorporate newly available data on 2020 flows and year-end 2020 assets for 401(k) plans, other private-sector DC plans, and private-sector DB plans from the US Department of Labor Form 5500 microdata. 

Beginning in the first quarter of 2020, incorporation of the newly available information resulted in upward revisions to previously published estimates of 401(k) plan assets and downward revisions to previously published estimates of private-sector DB plan and other private-sector DC plan assets.

If you have any questions or would like to request additional comments on this or data on another topic, please contact a member of ICI’s Media Relations team at 202-371-5413 or icipubcomm@ici.org.