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Retirement Industry Thought Leadership
Learn from retirement industry thought leaders whose positions are consistent with RCH's on retirement savings portability and preserving America's retirement savings.
Alight Solutions has released a new research report, entitled "Improving Retirement Readiness for Underrepresented Groups." The new paper identifies six key actions that plan sponsors can undertake to boost retirement savings for historically under-represented groups. In one of those actions, Alight advises employers that "implementing auto-portability can help reduce the number of automatic cash-outs that occur when people change employers" and that auto portability's impact is "most profound for marginalized groups."
Alicia Munnell, director of the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College and writing in MarketWatch, examines the phenomenon of 401(k) leakage, and considers the balancing act between preserving savings for retirement, vs. allowing access to savings for participants who need their money. Munnell identifies the "really annoying and large source of leakage is people cashing out when they change jobs" and, in an ideal world, would prefer to "prohibit cashing out at job changes entirely." More practically, Munnell suggests that RCH's auto portability program, "a platform for automatically transferring balances under $5,000 from an old plan to a new plan" could coexist with "a system with standardized forms and procedures for balances of all sizes."
EBRI's CEO Lori Lucas is featured in the current issue of Retirement Management Journal in an article entitled: “The Visionaries Series – Lori Lucas, CFA – The Economic Importance of Employee Benefits for Americans Financial Security.” In the wide-ranging piece, Lucas is interviewed by RMJ editor-in-chief Robert Powell, along with Stacy Schaus, founder & CEO of Schaus Group LLC. Lucas explains EBRI's efforts to bring clarity to the problem of cashout leakage, as well as their ongoing efforts to analyze the impact of auto portability on preserving Americans' retirement savings.
Writing in MarketWatch, Alicia Munnell, Director of the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College celebrates the news that Vanguard will offer RCH Auto Portability to their plan sponsor clients and participants, stating: "[t]his is a win for Vanguard and its customers, for Retirement Clearinghouse, which has been working on this project for many years, and for the retirement system as a whole" -- adding "[t]his initiative should dramatically reduce leakages and increase 401(k) balances." An astute observer of trends in the retirement sector, Munnell recounts the history of auto portability, from inception to regulatory approvals to its present state, where recordkeepers are now confidently adopting the financial technology. Munnell closes her piece writing: "it is lovely to see a win for the 401(k) system."
Greg Long, industry thought leader and head of Alight Solutions' head of Public Policy & Defined Contribution Public Sector, takes to LinkedIn to provide his viewpoint on auto portability. Citing another major recordkeeper's announcement that it's joining the RCH auto portability network, Long takes stock of that positive development, and uses it to advocate for making auto portability "the standard for all small, terminated accounts."
Alight Solutions, a leader in defined contribution plan services, released a new study that addresses the problem of small-balance 401(k) cashouts. The study, The impact of 401(k) cash-outs on retirement income, examines the very high prevalence of small-balance 401(k) cashouts, the low incidence of 401(k) roll-ins and provides illustrations that depict the importance of preserving these small balances for retirement. Finally, the study points to RCH Auto Portability as an important "emerging new tool" in the fight against cashouts, for which Alight is "pleased to be an early adopter."
In his capacity as Head of US Defined Contribution and Financial Wellness Research, Mercer's Neil Lloyd notes the recent emergence of serious industry dialogue on plan-to-plan retirement savings portability. Long a proponent of portability, Lloyd recognizes the inherent problems associated with holding multiple retirement saving accounts. In his piece, Lloyd strongly advocates for auto portability, stating that it "might be the solution to less efficient small-balance accounts." Lloyd goes further, opining that auto portability should be considered a legislative priority, writing that "SECURE ACT 2 will be vastly improved if provisions further supporting auto-portability are included."
In his ongoing "Barry's Pickings" column for PLANSPONSOR, Michael Barry, president of O3 Plan Advisory Services LLC, gives the U.S. Department of Labor an 'A' for its November 2018 issuance of a proposed Prohibited Transaction Exemption (PTE) and an Advisory Opinion on Auto Portability. Barry adds: "as a long-time advocate of the establishment of a clearinghouse, I view this as very good news."