(Bloomberg) — The number of people taking loans from their 401(k) retirement accounts increased 28% in the fourth quarter from a year earlier as older workers tapped their savings, according to Wells Fargo & Co.

The number is based on 1.9 million survey participants who have 401(k)s administered by the company, of which 34,987, or about 1.8%, took out loans, the San Francisco-based bank said last week in a statement. The average new loan balance rose 7% to $7,126.

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