It doesn't take a genius to know that 2008 has been a pretty up and down year with regard to the markets worldwide. To that end, I was quite surprised to happen upon an article that claims that American workers are continuing to fund their workplace savings plans, despite the volatility.
Many employers in the United States allow their employees to fund retirement plans, often with corporate matching or some level of participation. There are a number of advantages to these plans, including tax deductions (contributions are taken pre-tax and decrease tax liability) and faster savings when your company participates.
The downside is that this money is locked up and it's not easy (nor is it suggested) to make regular modifications to your investments. To that end, when things are good, they are good. When times go sour, well, let's just say that I look at my account balance once ever month so as not to be depressed.
Despite being the nation responsible for the subprime mess and that racks up amazing numbers in credit card debt, it's good to see that people are still thinking of their retirement and not being reactionary to the instability of the moment. Keeping a cool head and continuing to save for the future may be one of the smartest things one can do with their money at the moment.
In my case, I've decided to continue a conservative-to-moderate portfolio and ride it out.