How well do consumers understand HSAs? About half of Americans think they do, according to the latest research from the LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute.

A survey of more than 2,000 Americans found that 51 percent said they were somewhat or very knowledgeable about health savings accounts, with younger generations being more confident in their knowledge (59 percent of millennials and 55 percent of Gen Xers) than older generations (44 percent of baby boomers and 28 percent of the silent generation). This discrepancy is most likely attributable to the popularity of high-deductible health plans among younger, healthier consumers.

The survey also showed, however, that despite this confidence, many consumers have misconceptions about HSAs. Among them:

Additionally, for many consumers, HSAs blur the line between investment and spending accounts. While 74 percent of participants say an HSA is part of their retirement strategy, only 27 percent are using it to save for future health expenses but instead spending it on immediate health care costs.

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Emily Payne

Emily Payne is director, content analytics for ALM's Business & Finance Markets and former managing editor for BenefitsPRO. A Wisconsin native, she has spent the past decade writing and editing for various athletic and fitness publications. She holds an English degree and Business certificate from the University of Wisconsin.