01/13/2006 - Americans are rotten at saving. To encourage thrift, the government hands out billions in tax breaks, mostly to the nation's wealthiest half. The other half, it's long been assumed, either cannot or will not save.
In recent years, a growing number of state governments, nonprofit groups, foundations and private companies have been running pilot programs to induce poor and working-class Americans to save. The results, they say, are surprising: When participants get the right incentives and financial counseling, many open savings accounts, arrange for payroll deductions, and begin accumulating assets.
This Wall Street Journal article -- New Programs Spur Working Poor To Begin Saving -- is available on the site of the Pittburgh Post-Gazette.
Pew is no longer active in this line of work, but for more information visit the Retirement Security Project on PewHealth.org.