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Retirement plan portability blog posts
In this article, RCH's Spencer Williams and Tom Hawkins address an important retirement public policy question: How would a pairing of auto portability with open multiple employer plans (or “open MEPs”) impact the retirement savings of America’s minorities, and particularly, African-Americans?
RCH's Tom Hawkins reveals new research that predicts 401(k) participant outcomes following
separation for two balance segments – those above & below $15,000. Using logic developed in the Auto Portability Simulation to track & tally
participant outcomes 8 years following separation, the results reveal a startling contrast between
the two segments – with participants in the over-$15,000
segment experiencing far-superior outcomes to those in the under-$15,000
segment. To address the disparities, Hawkins advocates for a new “automatic” in the form of auto portability.
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.
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
RCH President & CEO addresses a blueprint for improving retirement security, incorporating the widespread adoption of auto portability.