Looking to Save More Than $1 Million for Retirement? 2 Cryptos to Buy Now and Hold for Decades

According to the latest survey on money and retirement from Northwestern Mutual, the amount needed by Americans to retire comfortably continues to rise. It has now increased to $1.46 million, which is up 15% from last year, and a whopping 53% from 2020. What makes that number particularly daunting is that the average amount saved for retirement is just $88,400.

Having less than $100,000 saved for retirement could work if you have a 25-year time horizon to grind out steady 10% annualized gains. But what if you have less time to make up ground? Or what if you have significantly less than $88,400 saved for retirement?

If that's the case, you might want to think about investing in cryptocurrencies, which have the potential to increase your money 10-fold within a short time horizon.


Although Bitcoin (CRYPTO: BTC) is not for everyone, there is no denying that it has the sort of high-octane fuel needed to deliver 10-fold returns. During the period from 2011-2021, Bitcoin was the top-performing asset in the world, and it wasn't even close.

Bitcoin delivered annualized returns of 230% per year. The next closest asset class -- high-growth tech stocks -- delivered just 20%. That helps to explain why Bitcoin has gone from being a $1 asset in 2011 to a $70,000 asset today.

While past performance is no guarantee of future results, the growing consensus on Wall Street is that Bitcoin still has a lot more room to run. Future price forecasts range from $100,000 on the low side to more than $3.8 million on the high side. And, according to Cathie Wood of Ark Invest, Bitcoin is now highly likely to hit a $1 million price tag before the year 2030, due to all the money flowing into the new spot Bitcoin ETFs.

Retired couple on vacation.

Image source: Getty Images.

So you can see where I'm going with this. If you spend $70,000 today to buy a single Bitcoin, then you could (theoretically) have a nice little $1 million retirement nest egg by the end of the decade.

Of course, this is a highly risky strategy, and not one that any responsible financial planner would ever propose. After all, Bitcoin remains a highly volatile asset. Overnight, your retirement savings could vanish into thin air, or the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) could decide to regulate Bitcoin out of existence.

However, the new spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) will likely help popularize using Bitcoin to save for retirement. Fidelity Investments has already opened up some retirement accounts for Bitcoin, and it appears likely that Bitcoin is going to become an option in many 401(k) retirement plans. Most likely, these investment options will cap the amount that you can allocate to Bitcoin, but you can still use them to turbocharge your retirement savings.


If Bitcoin is the top crypto for retirement, then Ethereum (CRYPTO: ETH) is the clear runner-up. Much like Bitcoin, Ethereum has an established track record of delivering performance to investors.

Back in April 2016, Ethereum was trading for less than $10. Now it's trading around $3,500. In less than a decade, you would have made 350-fold on your investment.

And Ethereum is not resting on its laurels. Ethereum underwent a major technological transformation (known as The Merge) in September 2022, and continues to make improvements to its underlying blockchain architecture to become faster, cheaper, and more scalable. By doing so, it is preparing for the next major wave of blockchain technology adoption, which will likely include large enterprises moving their operations over to the blockchain.

The current consensus is that Ethereum will become the second crypto to get its own spot ETF. Originally, the thinking was that this might occur by the end of May, but that is now looking increasingly unlikely. If the SEC does eventually approve a spot Ethereum ETF, then it will become much easier to save for retirement with Ethereum without needing to dip your toes directly into the crypto market.

Crypto for retirement?

Just a few years ago, the idea of using crypto to save for retirement would have been unthinkable. But as Wall Street launches more and more products for crypto investors, sentiment appears to be shifting. It doesn't hurt, of course, that both Bitcoin and Ethereum are near all-time highs right now, and that another crypto bull market rally appears to be underway.

Just keep in mind, however, that there is substantial risk in investing in crypto. As a result, crypto should never make up 100% of your retirement portfolio, and you certainly shouldn't be taking $70,000 out of your current retirement savings and using it to buy a single Bitcoin in the hopes of it soaring to $1 million. That would be a very expensive lottery ticket.

But, as they say, desperate times sometimes call for desperate measures. If you only have a few years left until retirement, or if you find yourself well behind what other Americans have saved for retirement, it could be time to boost your allocation to crypto to make up for lost ground.

Should you invest $1,000 in Bitcoin right now?

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Dominic Basulto has positions in Bitcoin and Ethereum. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends Bitcoin and Ethereum. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


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