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NOTEBOOK – ONE GOOD READ: Pandemic hasn’t caused people to drain retirement accounts


Last March, Congress allowed Americans to withdraw up to $100,000 from their individual retirement accounts without paying a penalty that typically applies to those under the age of 59 1/2. Fewer people than expected took that option, reports Anne Tergesen for the Wall Street Journal. In 2020, Fidelity Investments, the nation’s largest 401(k) provider, said 1.6 million people, or 6.3% of eligible participants in plans it administers, took some money out, writes Tergesen. “Given how many people have been impacted by COVID, 6% can be viewed as good news,” Rob Austin, director of research at Alight, told Tergesen. Some people in the industry initially expected as many as half of 401(k) participants to raid their accounts, Austin said.

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