Millions of Americans Are in Oil and Gas Business, Knowingly or Not

To a very large extent, many of us unwittingly or not are in the oil and gas business.

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And that fact is through our retirement accounts, IRAs, 401Ks, 403Bs and pension funds. Scott Middleton, who works with investment consulting company Innovest, said the national average for retirement investments in energy is somewhere between 5 to 10 percent.

The Colorado Public Employees Retirement Association, for example, has about seven percent of its total portfolio in the energy sector, which in Wall Street-speak basically means just oil and gas. It makes up about nine percent of the total stock market.

Ultimately, oil and gas is not a critical part of all retirement funds.

But make no mistake. Our retirement funds are absolutely critical for the oil and gas industry. The American Petroleum Institute says about 70 percent of U.S. oil company worth is owned by tens of millions of U.S. households through our IRAs, our pensions and our mutual funds.

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To read more of Inside Energy reporter Dan Boyce’s examination of energy investments, Stake in the Game, click here.

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