Living with Defined Contribution Pensions: Remaking Responsibility for Retirement

Overview

Employers are increasingly turning to defined contribution plans, especially the popular 401(k) plan, in place of the older, employer-based pension model.

This shift has implications for the nation's workforce. Such defined contribution pensions have clear advantages for employees, including greater flexibility and portability. But they also place a great deal of responsibility on participants' shoulders. Decisions about whether to participate, how much to contribute, and how to...

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Overview

Employers are increasingly turning to defined contribution plans, especially the popular 401(k) plan, in place of the older, employer-based pension model.

This shift has implications for the nation's workforce. Such defined contribution pensions have clear advantages for employees, including greater flexibility and portability. But they also place a great deal of responsibility on participants' shoulders. Decisions about whether to participate, how much to contribute, and how to invest can be overwhelming for individuals with limited knowledge or understanding of retirement savings.

Living with Defined Contribution Pensions considers the impact of defined contribution pension plans on the prospects for retirement saving and wellbeing. The book carefully analyzes the emerging trends in defined contribution pensions, seeking to explore how the switch will affect retirement income in the future, and recommending ways to improve decision making about pension design in the future.

"The book contains high-quality research, drawn from many sources and well referenced, yet written in a straightforward, businesslike way. . . . After an excellent introduction by the editors, the book is divided into three sections:

  • The new responsibility of defined contribution plans
  • Preserving defined contribution pension accumulations, and
  • Retirement policy and defined contribution plans.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Living with Defined Contribution Pensions can be recommended to anyone with a serious interest in the subject."—Benefits and Compensation International

"A superb integration of corporate and personal financial planning, pension, and political issues. . . . This book is full of thought-provoking, rigorous work."—Journal of Financial Service Professionals

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780812234398
  • Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press, Inc.
  • Publication date: 5/28/1998
  • Series: Pension Research Council Publications
  • Pages: 312
  • Product dimensions: 6.29 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.99 (d)

Meet the Author

Olivia S. Mitchell is Executive Director of the Pension Research Council and Professor of Insurance and Risk Management, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. Sylvester Schieber is Director of Research and Information Center, and Vice President, of Wyatt World Wide.

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Table of Contents

Preface

1. Defined Contribution Pensions: New Opportunities, New Risks
—Olivia S. Mitchell, Sylvester J. Schieber
2. Pension Coverage Initiatives: Why Don't Workers Participate?
—Richard P. Hinz, John A. Turner
3. Financial Illiteracy, Education, and Retirement Saving
—B. Douglas Bernheim
4. Factors Affecting Participation Rates and Contribution Levels in 401(k) Plans
—Robert L. Clark, Sylvester J. Schieber
5. Employee Decisions with Respect to 401(k) Plans
—Andrea L. Kusko, James M. Poterba, David W. Wilcox
6. Implications of the Shift to Defined Contribution Plans for Retirement Wealth Accumulation
—William G. Gale, Joseph M. Milano
7. Responses of Mutual Fund Investors to Adverse Market Disruptions
—John D. Rea, Richard G. Marcis
8. Trends in Retirement Income Plan Administrative Expenses
—Edwin C. Hustead
9. Emerging Problems of Fiduciary Liability
—Brian T. Ortelere
10. The Changing Paradigm of 401(k) Plan Servicing
—Ronald D. Hurt
11. The Importance of Variable Annuities in a Defined Contribution Pension System
—P. Brett Hammond
12. Disparate Savings Propensities and National Retirement Policy
—Richard A. Ippolito
13. The Future of the Defined Contribution Revolution
—Sylvester J. Schieber, Richard Dunn, David L. Wray

Contributors
Index

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