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Auto Portability - Recent Developments
Find the most-recent auto portability media coverage and developments.
Writing in NAPA Net, ARA Chief Content Officer Nevin Adams briefs readers on the 6/15/22 announcement of the bipartisan Advancing Auto Portability Act of 2022, introduced in the U.S. Senate by Senators Tim Scott (R-SC) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH). Adams notes the primary features of the legislation, mentions the role of Retirement Clearinghouse (RCH) and advises his readership to "stay tuned."
Today, U.S. Senators Tim Scott (R-S.C.) and Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) introduced the Advancing Auto-Portability Act of 2022, a bill that would allow a worker’s 401(k) savings account to be automatically rolled over from a previous employer to a new employer. The legislation would cut red tape to help Americans who change jobs frequently to increase retirement savings.
PRESS RELEASE: Bipartisan Legislation Introduced to Preserve Retirement Savings by Expanding Auto Portability
CHARLOTTE, N.C.—June 15, 2022—Robert L. Johnson, Founder and Chairman of The RLJ Companies and Chairman of Retirement Clearinghouse, LLC, applauds Senator Tim Scott (R-S.C.) and Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) for the introduction of the Advancing Auto Portability Act of 2022. The U.S. Senate legislation has the potential to preserve up to $1.5 trillion in retirement savings for the next generation of workers by encouraging auto portability. With auto portability, a participant’s 401(k) account can follow them as they change jobs, making it less likely that people prematurely cash-out their savings and improving retirement security.
On June 7th, Vanguard released the newest edition of How America Saves, the firm’s seminal report on 401(k) plan design and retirement savings habits. Through its annual, comprehensive analysis of nearly five million 401(k) accounts recordkept at Vanguard, the report reveals additional plan design opportunities employers can address to further improve workers’ retirement readiness. In the release, under key findings, Vanguard notes that "cash outs disproportionately impact younger, low-balance participants" and adds that "[a]uto portability services and revisions to minimum balance rules can help decrease cash out rates."
In her 4/25/22 article, Pensions & Investments reporter Margarida Correia examines auto portability's role in plugging leakage for small-balance 401(k) accounts. In her piece, Correia turns to several industry observers, including RCH EVP & Chief Revenue Officer Neal Ringquist, Alight Solutions' Director of Public Policy Greg Long and Vanguard's Head of Strategic Retirement Consulting David Stinnett. All three offered optimistic views of auto portability's efficacy, its attractiveness to plan sponsors, and its prospects for success. While auto portability is in the early stages of adoption and is building plan sponsor awareness, Long stated that auto portability will eventually "be standard operating procedure" while Stinnett added that "[p]lan sponsors are interested to find out more once the service is fully available."
Writing in 401k Specialist Magazine, Renée Wilder Guerin, RCH’s EVP of Public Policy, examines the 3/29/22 hearing held by the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP), which focused on solutions that would enhance retirement security for Americans, particularly those who are under-served and under-saved. Two of the four witnesses, WISER’s Cindy Hounsell and The Aspen Institute’s Ida Rademacher offered testimony highlighting the benefits of auto portability in leveling the playing field for women, minorities, and lower income workers. The latest hearing, writes Wilder Guerin “builds on previous Senate hearings and fuels growing momentum for auto portability among legislators, policymakers, advocacy groups, providers and plan sponsors.”
Writing in 401k Specialist, RCH’s Tom Hawkins reacts to the DOL’s 2/14/22 Request for Information (RFI) seeking comment on ways to “protect life savings and pensions from threats of climate-related financial risk.” Hawkins contends that our retirement system itself has significant sustainability problems that are more financially material to future retirees than climate change. Hawkins urges action to address the 401(k) system’s inefficiency and waste, which could “produce more of the ‘green’ that will matter to future retirees.” Hawkins notes the findings of a recent Brookings Institution report on the problem of small retirement accounts, which recommends improvements in “combining accounts” and includes support for auto portability.
Writing in the Pension Research Council's (Wharton School, Univ. of Pennsylvania) RetireSecure Blog, Michael Kreps of the Groom Law Group offers his considered view on auto portability, which Kreps believes "is likely to have an enormous impact on the US retirement system" by reducing cashout leakage and consolidating retirement savings. In the piece, Kreps cites a variety of industry statistics and projections, concluding that auto portability "will undoubtedly preserve many small accounts, making retirement more secure for millions of people."