The number of individuals taking loans from their 401(k) plans increased dramatically at the end of 2012, but they contributed more of their income to their retirement accounts.

According to an analysis of 1.9 million participants in Wells Fargo-administered defined contribution plans, more than 34 percent of people in their 50s took money from their retirement plans in the fourth quarter of 2012. Nearly 29 percent of those in their 60s and 27.3 percent of individuals in their 40s also tapped into their retirement accounts.

The numbers reflect a 28 percent increase overall in the number of participants taking loans from their 401(k) and the average loan balance increased to $7,126, a 7 percent increase from $6,662 in the fourth quarter of 2011.

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