There’s good news and bad in the latest Fidelity release of the 401(k) balances it oversees. Largely thought of as a bellwether for the 401(k) industry as a whole due to the number of accounts held at the Boston-based investment behemoth, the company reports the average balance had increased to another record high at the end of 2012.

Which would be great news if the average were significantly higher than the $77,300 Fidelity reports, considered low by retirement standards. It’s up from $69,100 one year earlier, an increase of 12%. The fourth-quarter average balance tops the previous quarter’s high of $75,900. About two-thirds of the 2012 increase was attributable to market action while one-third was due to participant contributions.

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