Even though the economy has begun to demonstrate occasional signs of life, many Americans are still feeling the sting of those darkest days. Millions of homeowners are struggling to pay mortgages they can’t afford and those that have walked away from underwater loans now have battle-scarred credit reports. So in order to stay afloat, more consumers are taking loans from their own retirement savings.
A recent study found that a record number of people (around 28%) with 401(k) retirement funds had loans (averaging $7,860) outstanding on them in 2010, meaning that these same folks will not have as much money set aside when it does come time to retire. That’s why a pair of Senators have introduced legislation that would make it more difficult for people to tap their 401(k)s.