The average 401(k) participant needs to work until age 73 to be able to afford retirement, according to an analysis of 10,000 accounts by employee benefits consulting firm Nyhart.

Nyhart also found that only 19% of employees will be able to retire by the age of 65, and that employees above the age of 55 will need to contribute 45% of the salary to be able to retire by age 65.

"Across all age groups and income levels, the employees who contribute the greatest percentage of income have the best opportunity for retirement," says Thomas Totten, senior actuary and lead research for the study.

"The decision of how much an employee contributes to their 401(k) far exceeds the importance of which investment funds they choose. By increasing your contribution by just 2% to 4% of total income, you can shave years off the age you retire," he adds.

Barney is the editor of Money Management Executive, a SourceMedia publication.Follow EBN on: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | Podcasts

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