It seems we haven’t come all that far from the mattress methodof saving.

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For 54 million Americans, says a new Bankrate.com report, cash —well, in the forms of savings and CDs, anyway — is the long-terminvestment of choice, beating out everything but real estate.

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Related: Tempted to skip your employers' Roth 401(k) plan?Think again

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While 25 percent of Americans chose real estate as their favoredsavings method for money that they don’t need for more than 10years, and 23 percent chose cash — the aforementioned savings andCDs — gold/precious metals and the stock market tied at 16 percenteach, with bonds only the investment of choice for a measly 5percent.

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Related: Participants like in-plan annuities — whenthey know what they are

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Considering the amount of return needed to fund a retirement,and the interest rates paid on savings and even CDs, that’s no wayto save for what could be 30 years out of the workplace.

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But understandably, perhaps, many are skittish when it comes toinvesting in stocks after the Great Recession — not to mention thedownturn of 2000-2002 — and it shows, particularly in GenX’sleast-likely penchant to turn to the stock market for theirlong-term investing; just 13 percent of them look to stocks as aninvestment, compared with 17 percent of millennials.

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Cash investments, as might be expected, were more popular amonghouseholds with lower incomes — below $50,000 — than they wereamong people with above-average incomes. And interestingly, 43percent of younger millennials — 18–25-year-olds — “overwhelmingly”chose cash as their investment of choice for money they wouldn’tneed for 10 or more years.

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And that was by more than a 2-to-1 margin over the nextrunner-up, real estate. But 28 percent of older millennials —26–35-year-olds — sided with older age groups on choosing realestate as their first option for long-term investment. Amongmillennials as a whole, 32 percent opted for cash instead.

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People appear to be more afraid of losing what they have thanthe potential to grow it into more. By choosing to invest long-termmoney into real estate, cash and even gold, they’re more pursuingsafe havens (although for gold, that’s debatable) than they areactually investing.

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But as long as the economy continues to treat the majorityharshly, with lower salaries and disappearing benefits, that’s atrend that’s likely to continue.

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