Past proposals for an Office of the Retirement Savings Lost and Found (“Lost & Found”) offered good examples of how the federal government could serve an important, ancillary role alongside the private sector in our nation’s 401(k) system.
Consolidation Corner Blog
Consolidation Corner is the Retirement Clearinghouse (RCH) blog, and features the latest articles and bylines from our executives, addressing important retirement savings portability topics.
On May 13, 2021, the U.S. Senate’s Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) held its first hearing on retirement security since 2013. With testimony from a blue-ribbon panel of witnesses, the hearing had a broad focus, but the topic of retirement savings leakage, and its most-promising solution, auto portability, were prominently featured.
Arriving with little fanfare, a recent study prepared by the Staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation, a nonpartisan committee of the United States Congress, confirms the findings of earlier research on cashout leakage – namely, that cashout leakage is a big problem, is driven by job changing, and is exacerbated by "forced distributions and [a lack of] portability of plans.”
Financial wellness has taken on a new urgency over the past year as we have witnessed a series of “once-in-a-lifetime” events that affect how we work and save for retirement. In response, many plan sponsors have adopted new and important tools to strengthen the financial wellbeing of their participants.
The case for auto portability, the new 401(k) plan default feature that automatically transfers small-balance retirement savings when participants change jobs, has always been strong. Now, with the April 22nd release of EBRI’s 31st Annual Retirement Confidence Survey (RCS), the case has grown stronger.
America’s 401(k) system, long plagued by friction, produces $92.4 billion of excessive cash-out leakage annually. In recent years and culminating in 2021, the private sector has finally “cracked the code” and is delivering innovative fintech solutions, combined with education and personal assistance to reduce friction and to enable true 401(k) portability.
So many extraordinary developments took place last year that some trends fell under the radar. One of these—the sharp uptick in migration out of large U.S. cities—can make a significant impact on sponsors and their plans.
When research performed 8 years ago reveals that your 401(k) plan, by turning on portability and consolidation for all participants, has halved cashout leakage and dramatically reduced its small account problem, what do you do for an encore?
With Boston Mayor Marty Walsh’s nomination to become Secretary of Labor advancing through the Senate, the transfer of power in Washington, DC is progressing. Although the Department of Labor is taking direction from a Democratic administration, the solution to the problem of rampant asset-leakage from the U.S. retirement system will remain on track.
401(k) Plan Sponsors: How would you like to radically boost your participants’ financial wellness, increase your plan’s assets, reduce your plan’s costs, and prevent missing participants?
Adopting this one simple and proven trick – retirement savings portability – delivers all this and more!