The $64,000 Question: Where Did My Retirement Savings Go?

Investment advice should be free of conflicts of interest The way Americans save for retirement has changed drastically over the past few decades. Thirty years ago, the typical worker had a pension through his or her job. Today, if workers have a retirement plan at all, it is likely a 401(k) or IRA. Why does this matter? Because now more than ever, individuals must make the complicated decisions about financial security in retirement: what to invest in, how much, how to …

What Happens to Your Pension When the Company Goes Bust?

Studebaker auto workers found out the hard way in 1963. When the Studebaker Corp. shut down its plant in South Bend, Ind., workers who had been promised pensions saw their hard-earned benefits vanish in an instant. Instead of receiving fixed payments throughout retirement, thousands of employees were forced to take one-time lump sums worth a fraction of what they’d earned. Thousands more received no benefits at all. The Studebaker Corp. had been promising pension benefits to its employees, but in …

A Tale of Two Americas

Today’s sobering statistic: Almost 20 percent of people ages 55 to 64 have no retirement savings. And even among those who have saved, millions are facing a retirement “deficit” – meaning they will outlive their retirement savings by $57,000 on average per household. Why does that matter to the rest of us? Because if millions of older adults haven’t saved enough to be self-sufficient in retirement, they will end up turning to government safety net services – a costly proposition …

Cut Social Security? Say Goodbye to Older Voters

Seventy-nine years after its creation, Social Security remains a vital key to Americans’ retirement security. And with the 2014 elections less than three months away, strengthening the program is a top priority for older voters, according to a new AARP survey of voters 50 and older. The message to candidates is clear: Stop treating Social Security like a line item in a budget. Older voters have earned their benefits through a lifetime of hard work and paying into the system. …

New Retirement Savings Plan Is Win-Win for Workers, Businesses

Last week, I sat down with Adrienne Mitchell of MarketWatch to talk about what 57 million American workers lack: a way to save for retirement at work – leaving them with little opportunity to secure their financial future. Just think about this for a minute: For workers who do have access to a retirement savings plan in the workplace, such as a 401(k), this increases their savings rate by 1300%. And, no, that’s not a typo. So, how can we …

A Secure Retirement: American Dream or Pipe Dream?

I often hear from friends and family members that they’re afraid they don’t have enough saved for retirement, and the truth is, many Americans are not prepared for the future. As recently highlighted by the New York Times, the reason many are not financially prepared is because they don’t have the right tools at work to help them save for their future. In fact, when individuals have a way to save through their workplace, their rate of savings goes up …