Bank certificates of deposit are the third most popular vehicle for retirement savings, according to survey of 1,000 workers that was released Tuesday.

Consumers said they place $20 of every $100 in retirement savings in bank accounts, compared to $26 in stocks, $22 in annuities, $8 in government bonds, $6 in municipal bonds, and $5 in corporate bonds. (The remaining $13 is placed in other investments.)

Fifteen percent said they intended to open a Roth Individual Retirement Act account when they become available next month. This account allows consumers to invest after-tax dollars in an account that may draw down tax- free after retirement. Another 54% said they were very interested in the accounts, which could provide banks with a source of long-term deposits.

Respondents also said they increased savings 2% to $203 per month during the past year, the third consecutive year that savings rose. But consumers also said they need to save more than $500 per month to meet their retirement needs, and only 44% said they are saving more this year than last year.

Workers also are increasingly using employer-sponsored savings plans, the survey found. Workers said they hold an average of $61,672 in these plans, a 10% increase from 1996.

The sixth annual Workplace Pulse Survey on retirement was commissioned by Colonial Life & Accident Insurance Co. and the Employers Council on Flexible Compensation, and was conducted by the Marketing Research Institute in early November.

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