CHICAGO (Reuters) – Are employers stingier with their 401(k) matching contributions when they automate the enrollment process?
Auto-enrollment has been a hot trend in the 401(k) world over the last few years. The idea is to nudge workers to save who might not otherwise do so through a simple behavioral change: action needs to be taken to opt out, instead of opt in. A study by behavioral economists Shlomo Benartzi and Richard H. Thaler, released today in Science magazine, says that 56 percent of companies offer some kind of auto-enrollment program, up from 19 in 2005.
CHICAGO (Reuters) – It is time to stop blaming the victim when it comes to women and retirement planning.
An endless stream of studies and surveys all show women are less prepared for retirement than men. The typical story line: “Women aren’t interested in managing money, and they’re not good at it. They’re more interested in other things – family, friends, children.”
CHICAGO, Feb 28 (Reuters) – Would you like some investment
help with that 401(k)?
A growing number of employers are adding unbiased
third-party investment guidance options as they work to improve
their retirement plans. The advice can add to your investment
costs, but it’s coming from the best type of planner:
independent advisers who have the fiduciary responsibility to
put client interests first.
CHICAGO, Feb 21 (Reuters) – There will be good and bad news
next year for seniors using Medicare’s prescription drug
Overall, enrollees can expect a year of flat or decreasing
Medicare prescription drug costs, according to data released
last week by the federal government. The government said
Medicare’s per-beneficiary drug costs fell 4 percent last year.
As a result, some of the most important numbers in the program’s
2014 Part D will drop by roughly the same amounts.
CHICAGO, Feb 14 (Reuters) – The gender gap is about to get a
little wider as the formerly egalitarian long-term care
insurance market starts charging higher prices for women.
While life insurance has long been priced by sex, companies
that provide long-term care insurance (LTCI), mainly used to
cover healthcare expenses in old age or for severe illness, have
long avoided it. But for the first time this year, they will
introduce gender-based pricing, starting with policies from
Genworth Financial Inc, the nation’s largest seller.
CHICAGO, Feb 7 (Reuters) – Susan Damour flunked retirement.
She tried it at age 64 in 2008 along with her husband, Tim, who
was 68. That lasted a year.
Overseas travel, cooking and knitting baby sweaters for the
grandchildren weren’t enough to satisfy her. Tim, a retired
attorney, was happy, but she hated it.
CHICAGO (Reuters) – If your household income last year was $57,500 or less, you could be leaving money on the table this tax season.
Uncle Sam offers a tax credit that can be worth up to half of what you contribute to a traditional individual retirement account (IRA), Roth or workplace retirement plan. The Retirement Savings Contribution Credit – a.k.a the Saver’s Credit – is only available to taxpayers with moderate or low income.
CHICAGO, Feb 5 (Reuters) – The baby boom generation has
broken the mold at every stage of life, and it looks like old
age won’t be any different.
Boomers aren’t heading quietly into retirement. They’re
launching businesses, embracing digital technology and living
abroad in greater numbers than ever before. But in other ways
they are struggling more than the previous generation.
CHICAGO (Reuters) – Suppose a pollster asks you this question about Social Security reform:
“Social Security will only be able to pay 75 percent of benefits after 2033 if Congress fails to act. That can be fixed by cutting benefits or by increasing taxes. Which do you favor?”
CHICAGO (Reuters) – It was a small but important line item in the recent “fiscal cliff” deal. As part of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, Congress made it possible for all retirement savers to convert their 401(k) accounts to a Roth 401(k) without moving money out of the workplace plan.
The law permits all retirement savers to convert existing 401(k) retirement plan assets to a Roth 401(k), so long as their plan offers Roth options and adds the conversion feature. Previously, conversions could be done only by savers who also were eligible to take a distribution from the plan — in most cases, people age 59½ or older.