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How America Saves 2019

Abstract: The 18th edition of "How America Saves" delivers a 121-page comprehensive analysis of the retirement savings behavior of 5 million participants in about 1,900 defined contribution retirement plans for which Vanguard provides recordkeeping services. Our data-rich report examines trends in how participants accumulate, manage, and access retirement savings.

Source: Vanguard.com, June 2019

America Has the Widest Retirement Savings Gap of These Developed Nations

Abstract: Many Americans haven't saved as much money as they need for retirement, and the gap is expected to widen dramatically in the next 30 years. The retirement savings gap -- between what people have and should have -- was $28 trillion in the U.S. in 2015, but by 2050, it's expected to swell to $137 trillion, according to the World Economic Forum, a Cologny-Geneva, Switzerland-based nonprofit that researched international financial affairs.

Source: Marketwatch.com, June 2019

Top 401k Plans Ranked by Industry

Abstract: New analysis from MONEY pegs top company retirement plans in 14 different industries and compares the average participant account balance to industry average 401k balance.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, June 2019

Average Employer 401k Match Revealed: How Generous -- or Stingy -- Is Your Company?

Abstract: Is your company being stingy when it comes to supporting your future? If your employer is contributing less than 4.7 percent toward your 401k, then you have your answer. According to a new report from Fidelity, that's the average 401k match companies were handing out in the first quarter of 2019.That contribution rate, a record high, bumped the average total savings rate (employee contributions + company match) to an all-time high of 13.5 percent in the first quarter.

Source: Yahoo.com, June 2019

Student Loan Benefit Program

Abstract: This white paper examines IRS Private Letter Ruling (PLR 201833012), issued May 22, 2018. In the PLR, the IRS ruled that a student loan repayment program included in an employer-sponsored 401k plan did not violate the "contingent benefit" prohibition. Under the program, employees received employer contributions that were conditioned on making student loan repayments in lieu of receiving regular matching contributions under the plan. Employers may want to adopt an SLR program in order to attract and retain employees with outstanding student loans, who may lack the funds to make 401k contributions and receive employer matching contributions.

Source: Newportgroup.com, May 2019

Retirement Plan Participants Stayed the Course Through Up and Down Markets in 2018

Abstract: Almost all defined contribution (DC) plan participants kept contributing to their retirement savings during 2018, according to ICI's "Defined Contribution Plan Participants' Activities, 2018." The study tracks contributions, withdrawals, and other activity based on DC plan recordkeeper data covering more than 30 million participant accounts in employer-based DC plans.

Source: Ici.org, May 2019

What Age Should Retirement Be Planned To?

Abstract: One of the big discussions in the profession is choosing the age retirement should be planned to. Should it be age 95? Age 100? Some other age? Here's a good brief discussion on the implications of choosing an age.

Source: Brightscope.com, May 2019

Participants' Satisfaction with Providers Continues to Decline

Abstract: The National Association of Retirement Plan Participants (NARPP) has released its annual "Participant Trust & Engagement Study," which shows that overall satisfaction with providers has declined by 24 percentage points in the past six years to a new low. NARPP says that if retirement plan participants trusted their providers more, it would likely lead to higher deferral rates.

Source: Planadviser.com, May 2019

Investors Who Stayed the Course Rewarded With Significant Gains

Abstract: Despite a rocky end to 2018 and predictions of an impending recession, those who stayed the course were rewarded with a generous first quarter rebound on the 10-year anniversary of the stock market low.

Source: Ntsa-net.org, May 2019

Defined Contribution Plans and the Challenge of Financial Illiteracy

Abstract: Study analyzes data from the 2015 National Financial Capability Study to show that people whose only exposure to investment decisions is by virtue of their participation in an employer-sponsored 401k plan are poorly equipped to make sound investment decisions. This lack of financial literacy is critical both because of the financial consequences of poor financial decisions and because of a legal structure that relies on participant choice to limit the fiduciary obligations of the employer with respect to the structure and options provided by the retirement plan.

Source: Ssrn.com, May 2019

Callan Releases Study of Investment Manager-Sponsored 401k Plans

Abstract: Callan announced the release of "The Cobbler's Shoes: How Asset Managers Run Their Own 401k Plans." The white paper explores what the investment management industry, the stewards tasked with managing the investments of 401k plans for others, do for their own employee base.

Source: Businesswire.com, May 2019

Sustainable Investing in Defined Contribution Plans

Abstract: The recent series of bulletins on ESG-related investing issued by the DOL has led to confusion due to a lack of clarity in the language and an inconsistent tone over the course of different administrations. This 8-page paper seeks to provide plan sponsors with a base level of knowledge about sustainable investing and integration, by providing clarification on terminology and focusing on areas that historically have been misperceived.

Source: Dciia.org, May 2019

More Than Half of Workers Support a Retirement Savings Mandate

Abstract: While 66% of American workers are still planning to supplement their personal savings with income from Social Security, 42% also don't believe Social Security benefits will even be available to them when they retire, suggesting "overarching confusion" around what sources of income retirees will actually have in retirement. In fact, the concern is so great that a large majority of Americans are willing to support government intervention.

Source: Napa-net.org, May 2019

Average Deferral Rates Reach 10-Year High of 8.6%

Abstract: T. Rowe Price has released its annual participant data benchmarking report, Reference Point, which shows mixed results for participants in 2018. On the positive side, average deferral rates reached a 10-year high of 8.6%, outstanding 401k loans fell to a nine-year low of 22.5% and hardship withdrawals fell for the ninth year in a row, from 1.9% in 2010 to 1.3% in 2018.

Source: Planadviser.com, May 2019

In 2013, Workers Removed $69 Billion from Retirement Savings

Abstract: In 2013, workers in their prime working years, i.e. those between the ages of 25 and 55, removed $69 billion of their retirement savings early, according to a GAO analysis of data from the Internal Revenue Service and the Department of Labor. The bulk of the leakage was from individual retirement accounts, with $39.5 billion being removed from these accounts. That represented 3% of total IRA holdings and exceeded contributions in that year.

Source: Planadviser.com, May 2019

Nearly One-Third of Employers Embracing Student Loan Debt Programs

Abstract: Nearly one-third of employers, 32.4%, offer or are planning to offer some student loan debt program, such as debt consolidation, refinancing or employer-paid subsidies, according to EBRI's 2018 Financial Wellbeing Survey. Among those that are, they are more likely than others to have measured their employees' financial wellness.

Source: Planadviser.com, April 2019

Morningstar: DC Investment Menu Moves Matter

Abstract: Morningstar researchers found what they termed "significant evidence" that replacement funds outperformed the replaced fund over both future one-year and three-year periods. The researchers noted as the "most surprising" finding, more specifically "unexpected in the context of past research, which has generally noted that replacement funds do no better (or worse) than the funds being replaced."

Source: Napa-net.org, April 2019

From Diligence to Delivery: Capturing Value From Retirement Recordkeeping M&A

Abstract: Given the US defined-contribution market's abundance of competitors, pricing pressure, and the IT-intensive nature of the business, it is no surprise it has gradually consolidated over the past decade. And this consolidation in the US retirement arena continues apace. To maximize deal value, firms must follow some industry-specific best practices.

Source: Mckinsey.com, April 2019

Most Millennials Saving for Retirement Prefer Human Advice

Abstract: Even though millennials often get a bad rap for being frivolous, a new study from New Jersey-based fintech firm LendEDU found 58 per cent are saving for retirement, and with the time value of money on their side, they could be better prepared than some had previously thought. The majority of millennial respondents also said they see the value of advice: 65 per cent would prefer a human advisor over a robo-advisor and only 16 per cent would opt outright for the robo.

Source: Benefitscanada.com, April 2019

Tailoring Plan Designs to Reflect Shorter Employee Tenure

Abstract: Recent research reports suggest average employee tenure in the U.S. has trended downward; retirement industry experts agree this fact should inform plan design discussions and participant-level services.

Source: Planadviser.com, April 2019

Americans' Retirement Expectations are Unrealistic

Abstract: Americans are dramatically underestimating their financial needs in retirement, but they don't seem to realize it, according to a new report released today by Natixis Investment Managers. More than two-thirds (67%) of American workers with access to a workplace retirement savings plan say they expect to have enough money saved for retirement to live as they want, or at least comfortably, as long as they are careful with spending. Yet the findings show their basic assumptions -- about when they can retire, how much they need to save and how long their assets will last -- are flawed.

Source: Natixis.com, April 2019

19th Annual Transamerica Retirement Survey Released

Abstract: The latest research findings from TCRS based on its 2018 survey of American workers. The Annual Transamerica Retirement Survey explores attitudes about retirement and retirement readiness among American workers. What Is "Retirement"? Three Generations Prepare for Older Age highlights differences and similarities among Baby Boomers, Generation X and Millennials.

Source: Transamericacenter.org, April 2019

The Future of Innovation in DC Plan Design

Abstract: If strengthening retirement security is the goal, then success can only be measured based on improving long-term outcomes. Unfortunately, as DC savings plans have taken the place of traditional DB plans, the shift has been away from outcomes to inputs. Returning to a true focus on outcomes requires moving away from a myopic focus on savings to evaluating whether retirees will have sufficient income to meet their needs once they stop working. This approach to retirement security considers an individual's retirement life cycle.

Source: Georgetown.edu, March 2019

Doing Good While Doing Well

Abstract: Plan fiduciaries are seeing increased interest in socially responsible, or impact, investing as an option in their plan offerings. However, given the numerous and sometimes conflicting priorities that plan sponsors face, how important should the focus on socially responsible investing strategies be? This report reviews the history behind socially responsible investing and strategies for incorporating ESG investments in your plan's investment menu.

Source: Strategicbenefitservices.com, March 2019

Emerging Trends in 401k and 403b Fund Menus

Abstract: Given the shift in participant mindset and demographics, it's important for retirement plan committees to re-think the traditional approach to designing plan investment menus. Article discusses the strategic outcomes fiduciaries should be focused on when designing a fund lineup for their plan.

Source: Greenspringadvisors.com, March 2019

Most Households Approaching Retirement Have Low Savings, an Update

Abstract: A GAO 2015 report on retirement security included estimates on the percentage of households aged 55 and over without retirement savings or a defined benefit plan (traditional employment-based pension plans that offer benefits based on factors like salary and years of service). They have updated these estimates and found that the percent of households headed by someone aged 55 and over that had no retirement savings decreased from about 52 percent in 2013 to about 48 percent in 2016.

Source: Gao.gov, March 2019

The Majority of Independent Workers Are Actively Saving for Retirement

Abstract: According to T. Rowe Price, 56% of independent workers are actively saving for retirement. Significantly more traditional workers are actively saving for retirement in comparison (72%). This may be due to the fact that the majority of traditional workers use their employer-sponsored retirement plan (68%) and likely have access to the automatic savings features typically available in those plans, while independent workers are primarily using IRAs (40%).

Source: Troweprice.com, March 2019

Distributions From DC Plans

Abstract: With an increased focus on retirement income, employers are now turning their attention to how their workers are using their defined contribution plan assets after terminating employment. To help organizations better evaluate the distribution decisions people make when they leave employment, Alight Solutions analyzed the post-termination behavior of more than 2 million DC participants from 2008 - 2017.

Source: Alight.com, March 2019

Cerulli Finds All Talk, No Action Regarding DC Plan ESG Investment Adoption

Abstract: Cerulli Associates found fee sensitivity and the notion that environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing entails a trade-off in performance are two broadly applicable headwinds to ESG adoption.

Source: Plansponsor.com, March 2019

How Well Do 401k Plan Sponsors Support Participants?

Abstract: Tools like managed accounts and target-date funds continue to gain ground, and more than one-third of companies now offer investment advice to participants, more findings from PSCA's 61st Annual Survey reveal. There are several ways that companies provide investment support to participants through the availability of managed accounts, target-date funds, automatic features/QDIAs, and personalized investment advice from professionals.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, March 2019

Departing Employees Who Stay in DC Plan for at Least a Year Not Likely to Leave

Abstract: If defined contribution plans encourage departing employees to keep their balances in their plans for at least a year, there's a good chance participants will retain their accounts in the plan. That's the conclusion of a study by Alight Solutions, which tracked participants in plans for which Alight is the recordkeeper from 2008 through 2017 and analyzed participants' behavior after they decide to retire or take another job.

Source: Pionline.com, March 2019

Ten Ways Behavioral Finance Can Boost Retirement Security

Abstract: The insights of behavioral finance have the potential to help employers, plan sponsors and plan administrators make changes that can yield a substantial difference in the actions of employees and plan participants. This 2-page paper provides ten tips based on the principles of behavioral finance for helping workers achieve a secure retirement.

Source: Ifebp.org, March 2019

Americans Cite Healthcare Expenses as No. 1 Barrier to Early Retirement

Abstract: When asked to name barriers to financial independence and early retirement, Americans are less concerned about uncertain market conditions (37 percent) or inflation (35 percent), than they are about healthcare costs (57 percent), according to a new survey conducted for TD Ameritrade, of 1,500 Americans aged 45 and older with $250,000 or more in investable assets.

Source: Amtd.com, March 2019

Unlocking Participant Behavior a Key to Retirement Security

Abstract: There are many pieces to the puzzle that is retirement security. And one of them, suggests a benefits institute, is the behavior of plan participants. Working with, and influencing, that can help put pieces in place. In a paper recent paper, the International Foundation of Employee Benefits Plans argues that behavioral finance shows "that retirement plan design and communication are too often based on assumptions about people that are wrong." The paper offers 10 suggestions for ways to use behavioral finance to help employees and participants in preparing financially for retirement.

Source: Asppa.org, March 2019

TDF Adoption in 2018

Abstract: In 2018, 59% of Vanguard participants in defined contribution plans were invested in a professionally managed account option, including 52% who were invested in a single target-date fund. Use of TDFs in DC plans continued to grow. At year-end 2018, 9 in 10 plans offered a TDF, three-quarters of all participants had a position in the funds, and the funds accounted for 35% of plans' assets and more than half of total plan contributions. This is an 8-page report.

Source: Vanguard.com, March 2019

Guide to Retirement 2019 Edition

Abstract: "Retirement" is different now than for previous generations, and many topics and issues are interconnected. Each section of this thorough and wide-ranging 52-page analysis discusses common misconceptions and retirement challenges and provide the tools to address them.

Source: Jpmorgan.com, March 2019

Lifetime Income: Current Policy Initiatives

Abstract: DC plans, as account-based plans present three broad "adequacy" challenges: (1) adequate savings; (2) adequate investment; and, (3) adequate payout. There has been less success developing solutions to challenge (3), translating the DC account into a stream of retirement income that will last over the participant's expected life. This article considers the obstacles to finding a DC "lifetime income solution" and then survey the policy initiatives that have thus far been adopted or proposed to address the challenge.

Source: Octoberthree.com, February 2019

Do Employees End Up With More Retirement Income Under Automatic Enrollment 401k Plans?

Abstract: The Employee Benefit Research Institute has released a new study examining the level of benefits that 401k plans with automatic enrollment provide compared to final-average defined benefit plans, with some potentially surprising results.

Source: Ebri.org, February 2019

DC Plan Participants' Activities, First Three Quarters of 2018

Abstract: This 14-page report updates results from ICI's survey of a cross section of recordkeeping firms representing a broad range of DC plans and covering more than 30 million employer-based DC retirement plan participant accounts as of September 2018. The broad scope of the recordkeeper survey provides valuable insights about recent withdrawal, contribution, asset allocation, and loan decisions of participants in DC plans.

Source: Ici.org, February 2019

Action Needed to Clarify Tax Treatment of Unclaimed 401k Plan Savings Transferred to States

Abstract: What happens if you lose track of some of your retirement funds, such as a 401k from a prior employer? The companies holding those unclaimed accounts can take the money out and transfer it to states. States hold the money as lost property until the owners claim it. But whenever money comes out of a tax-deferred account, there are taxes to consider. In this report, the GAO looked at how IRS treats these transfers for tax purposes. While there is some guidance from IRS and the Department of Labor on these transfers, IRS hasn't clarified tax reporting and withholding requirements for employers transferring unclaimed retirement funds.

Source: Gao.gov, February 2019

Sponsors of DC Plans Still Sharply Focused on Fees

Abstract: For the third year in a row, respondents to the annual Callan Institute "Defined Contribution (DC) Trends Survey" specified reviewing their plan fees as a key area of focus and as the best way to improve their fiduciary position as plan sponsors. Asked in the fall of 2018, 106 defined contribution (DC) plan sponsors, both Callan clients and other organizations, said that for 2019, assessing fees was more important than any other activity they undertook in managing their plans.

Source: Hrdailyadvisor.blr.com, February 2019

Global DC Pension Assets Exceed DB Assets for First Time

Abstract: The report also found that DC assets now account for over 50% of total assets across the seven largest pension markets, for the first time. This continues the trend of DC growing at a faster pace over the last ten years, with DC assets growing by 8.9%, while defined benefit assets have grown by 4.6% during this time.

Source: Willistowerswatson.com, February 2019

Retirees Say They Live as Well or Better in Retirement Than During Their Working Years

Abstract: More than two-thirds of retirees say they live as well or better in retirement as they did when they were working, according to a recent study focused on retirees conducted by T. Rowe Price. Meanwhile, only 39 percent of current workers believe they will live as well or better in retirement.

Source: Troweprice.com, February 2019

Financial Wellness Programs Take Center Stage with Employers

Abstract: Five years ago, employers were just starting to provide workers with financial benefits beyond their retirement plan, but now financial wellness appears to be firmly entrenched in the benefits space, according to a recent report. Nearly two-thirds of employers say they are very likely to take steps in 2019 to create or focus on the financial wellbeing of their workers in ways that go beyond retirement savings.

Source: Napa-net.org, February 2019

Workers Aren't Aware of a Valuable Tax Credit Available to Retirement Savers

Abstract: Most American workers are unaware of an important tax credit that may help them save for retirement. The Saver's Credit, also referred to as the Retirement Savings Contributions Credit by the IRS, is available to eligible taxpayers who are saving for retirement. Unfortunately, 62 percent of workers are unaware of the credit, according to survey findings from Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies. p>

Source: Prnewswire.com, January 2019

DC Plan Sponsors Seek to Keep Assets in Their Plans

Abstract: Study looks at how retirement plans have changed since it first conducted its survey of employers 10 years ago, as well as retirement plan sponsors' top goals for their plans in 2019. The top three goals for 2019 include expanding financial wellbeing programs, keeping retirees' assets in the plan and locating missing participants. Sixty-one percent say the threat of lawsuits prevents them from being more innovative with their defined contribution plan.

Source: Planadviser.com, January 2019

Plan Enhancements Drive Record Retirement Savings Rates

Abstract: Research from the Plan Sponsor of America finds that employers are making significant plan design enhancements that are likely driving the record contribution rates. The increases in retirement contributions from both plan participants and plan sponsors confirm the positive impact of company-sponsored retirement savings plans. The survey also finds that a larger percentage of eligible employees are participating in their plan. The percentage of eligible employees with an account balance has increased by more than six percentage points in the last 10 years.

Source: Psca.org, January 2019

How Much of a 401k Should be Allocated to Annuities?

Abstract: At current annuity rates, EBRI finds purchasing a DIA at age 65, deferring 20 years with no death benefits, results in an overall improvement in retirement readiness for all ages of death combined, when DIA purchases were up to 20 percent of the 401k balance. However, there is an overall decrease in retirement readiness for DIA purchases starting at 25 percent due in part to the interaction with long-term care costs.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, January 2019

What's Driving Record 401k Savings Rates?

Abstract: While a strong economy and better education and awareness are no doubt factors, PSCA finds that employers are making significant plan design enhancements that are likely driving the record contribution rates. They include higher default rates, more generous matches and earlier plan eligibility.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, January 2019

LIMRA Expects Greater DC Plan Access to Annuities by 2020

Abstract: LIMRA anticipates equity markets will slow modestly this year, while interest rates will continue to rise; the organization expects these conditions to promote growth in annuity purchases by long-term investors.

Source: Planadviser.com, January 2019

Optimal Number of 401k Investment Categories Between 12 and 20 Study Says

Abstract: Offering fewer than 12 categories may mean participants are not being given sufficient opportunity to diversify, and offering more than 20 could lead to lower average investment in each fund, which may cause higher fees, ERISApedia.com says.

Source: Planadviser.com, January 2019

More Pay? Nah. Employees Prefer Benefits

Abstract: By a four-to-one margin (80 percent to 20 percent), workers would choose a job with benefits over an identical job that offered 30% more salary with no benefits, according to the American Institute of CPAs, which released the results of its 2018 Employee Benefit Report, a poll this spring of 2,026 U.S. adults (1,115 of whom are employed) about their views on workplace benefits.

Source: Voya.com, January 2019

Fees Remain the Focus for DC Plan Sponsors

Abstract: Defined contribution plan sponsors are continuing their intense scrutiny of fees, according to Callan's 2019 Defined Contribution Trends Survey, while also adding participant communication and financial wellness as top priorities for this year.

Source: Callan.com, January 2019

2019 Hot Topics in Retirement and Financial Wellbeing

Abstract: The 32-page 2019 Hot Topics in Retirement and Financial Wellbeing report is based on an annual survey that Alight Solutions administers to employers in an effort to capture the changes they intend to make to their retirement and financial wellbeing plans in the year ahead. The 2019 version is the 15th installment of the report and comes from the responses of nearly 175 organizations that employ 7.6 million workers. The survey was administered in the fall of 2018.

Source: Alight.com, January 2019

Research Finds 4 in 10 Small Businesses Currently Offer Retirement Benefits

Abstract: Research shows Americans' top financial concern is affording a comfortable retirement and access to a workplace savings plan is the most effective way to get people to start to save for retirement. However, when it comes to small businesses (2-99 employees) only 42 percent offer retirement benefits. The good news is that the research finds 40 percent of small business employers feel retirement benefits are more important now than three years ago.

Source: Limra.com, January 2019

Closing the Retirement Savings Coverage Gap - Multiple Employer Plans

Abstract: The retirement coverage gap can and should be narrowed. While a variety of solutions are possible, there is a growing consensus in Washington that one of the broadest and most expedient ways would be to expand access to multiple employer plans, or MEPs, for small employers and their employees. This 12-page paper outlines the legislative and regulatory actions that would be needed to broaden access to MEPs. It also describes the features that a model MEP might incorporate.

Source: Prudential.com, December 2018

What Do Participants Want in Their Investments?

Abstract: When it comes to investing for retirement, a frequently asked question is, "How do defined contribution plan participants make decisions regarding their investment elections?" Very often, participants do not possess the technical skills to assess the appropriateness of an investment for their DC portfolio. Therefore, it is important to understand what characteristics of an investment they value most and least.

Source: Napa-net.org, December 2018

The Impact of Employee Financial Health at Work

Abstract: Survey shows a clear relationship between employees' financial worries and their work performance, engagement and absence. Specifically, the survey finds that employees who are financially struggling: Lose 41% more work time to absence than peers without financial worries; Have lower engagement levels than peers without financial worries (51% vs 29%); and, Are less productive compared with peers without financial worries (32% vs. 5%).

Source: Willistowerswatson.com, December 2018

Most Retirees Say Employers Did Nothing to Help With Retirement Transition

Abstract: A survey of 2,043 retirees by the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies shows two-thirds (66%) say their most recent employers did "nothing" to help pre-retirees' transition into retirement, and 16% are "not sure" what their employers did. Among the 18% of retirees whose employers helped pre-retirees, the most frequently cited offerings are financial counseling about retirement (6%), seminars and education about transitioning into retirement (5%), the ability to reduce work hours and shift from full- to part-time (5%), and accommodating flexible work schedules and arrangements (5%).

Source: Plansponsor.com, December 2018

How Trust in Financial Institutions Affects Retirement Plan Participation

Abstract: Most workers at small to mid-size businesses trust information from their banks and credit unions, but those who do not may be less likely to participate in a retirement savings plan if offered one, according to a survey by The Pew Charitable Trusts.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, December 2018

Is There a Future for Financial Wellness Programs?

Abstract: Financial wellness programs were greeted with great hopes when they first debuted. But is the prognosis for their long-term success starting to flag? Amid signs that such programs have not been as impactful as expected, this white paper takes a 360-degree look at three sets of stakeholders -- plan sponsors, plan participants and retirement plan advisors -- to construct a clearer picture of the state of financial wellness initiatives.

Source: Marketstrategies.com, December 2018

Employers Must Act Ahead of Retirement Wave

Abstract: According to Willis Towers Watson, just over 80% of organizations acknowledge the importance of their older workers and managing the retirement process; however, only about half believe they understand the process well, and just one-quarter feel they have found an effective approach.

Source: Planadviser.com, December 2018

Study Highlights Important Trends and Implications for Target-Date Fund Design

Abstract: An ongoing study of how real-life participant saving patterns interact with target-date design continues to show that suboptimal participant behaviors and the consequent increase in cash flow volatility remain much more prevalent than many plan sponsors might expect. This series of three articles discusses findings and the steps plan sponsors can take to place participants on a path to a more secure retirement.

Source: Jpmorgan.com, December 2018

The Winding Road to Retirement - Financial Stress Survey

Abstract: John Hancock announced the results of its annual Financial Stress Survey of 1,352 retirement plan participants, revealing a majority of workers (69 percent) are stressed over their finances, costing companies approximately $2,000 per employee. Most respondents (72 percent) admitted to worrying about personal finances while at work, with one-third doing so more than once per week.

Source: Jhrps.com, December 2018

Retirement 2020 Study

Abstract: There is a sea change underway in the retirement industry. As many as five different generations are now participating in retirement plans. New technologies are emerging to engage participants and streamline back-office operations. All the while, the regulatory environment continues to shift with new and proposed rules. Amidst dramatic change lies unprecedented opportunity.

Source: Broadridge.com, December 2018

How Have Workers Responded to Oregon's Auto-IRA?

Abstract: To assess the overall impact of an auto-IRA, one would need comprehensive financial data for a household, including debt, income, and saving over a long period of time. But an early look can still be useful, so this 10-page paper examines the experience of Oregon to date, which recently became the first state to implement an auto-IRA program (called OregonSaves). The goal is to answer a limited question: how do workers who gain access to an auto-IRA initially interact with the program?

Source: Bc.edu, December 2018

A Close Look at ERISA 403b Plans

Abstract: This 68-page report analyzes 403b plans in the Department of Labor 2015 Form 5500 Research File. The focus then shifts to nearly 4,000 audited 403b plans in the BrightScope Defined Contribution Plan Database, which have at least $1 million in plan assets and typically 100 participants or more.

Source: Ici.org, December 2018

Latino Workers Need Far Better Access to DC Plans

Abstract: Working in collaboration with Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization, the National Institute on Retirement Security has published a detailed analysis of the challenges facing Latino workers in the U.S. as they save and invest for retirement.

Source: Planadviser.com, December 2018

Defined Contribution Plan Participants' Activities, First Half 2018

Abstract: Key Findings of this 12-page report include: DC plan withdrawal activity in the first half of 2018 remained low and was similar to the activity observed in the first half of 2017; The vast majority of DC plan participants continued contributing to their plans in 2018; Most DC plan participants stayed the course with their asset allocations as stock values generally rose during the first six months of the year; and, DC plan participants' loan activity was little changed at the end of June 2018.

Source: Ici.org, December 2018

Boomers Find Reasons to Retire Later

Abstract: It is one of "the most significant labor market trends" in the United States, says Wellesley College researcher Courtney Coile. She's referring to big increases since the 1980s and 1990s in the share of older Americans in the labor force, including one in three men in their late 60s. Given the implications of this trend for retirement security -- the longer people work, the better off they'll be -- Coile and many other researchers have investigated what's driving it. They agree on several things that are changing the retirement calculation.

Source: Asppa.org, December 2018

Nine Issues 401ks May Face in 2019, and What to Do About Them

Abstract: In an era when Americans are responsible for funding their own retirement through the 401k and similar plans, inherent risks are involved. Willis Towers Watson identifies several and offers solutions in its recent report.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, December 2018

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