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Auto Portability blog posts
Auto portability has become a leading retirement savings public policy initiative due to its proven ability to preserve small-balance defined contribution accounts. Now, research is indicating that, when it comes to women, auto portability could deliver even greater benefits by making it easier for women participants to preserve their 401(k) savings and help to put them on par with men to achieve financial wellness.
Plan sponsors intuitively know that a proliferation of small-balance 401(k) accounts can create problems. But few sponsors are clear on the factors that give rise to small accounts, and fewer still understand how they can utilize portability programs to solve the problem.
At a May 22nd, 2018 Women's Institute for a Secure Retirement (WISER) roundtable, Retirement Clearinghouse (RCH) EVP Tom Johnson debuts new women's 401(k) cashout leakage statistics. This important new data highlights the challenges that women face in preserving their small-balance 401(k) retirement savings when changing jobs, and also points to the promise of auto portability to preserve these savings in order to achieve higher balance levels, where more virtuous behaviors can prevail.
As we continue to make our way through the second quarter of 2018, now is a good time to reflect on defined contribution (DC) plan sponsor priorities for this year.
Over the past six years, there has been a steady drumbeat pointing the way to increased portability and in-plan consolidation (roll-ins) as the next big strategic focus for 401k plans.
Just as no man is an island, no
employer-sponsored retirement plan is an island. New hires who join a plan all
come from other companies, where they were likely enrolled in their
former-employer 401(k) plans. Similarly, participants who leave a plan when they
change employers have accrued 401(k) savings that they will likely want to take
Two retirement savings public policy initiatives – auto portability and the problem of missing participants – are very likely to see significant progress in 2018. Both initiatives enjoy strong bipartisan support, promise to streamline and strengthen America’s defined contribution system, and will preserve the retirement savings of millions of Americans by ensuring that their savings move forward when they change jobs.