Plan Sponsors and Recordkeepers Agree That Retirement Income Will Be “The Biggest Trend” Over Next Five Years

Posted: June 6, 2012 at 11:16 am

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As attention to the importance of creating retirement income grows, a new MetLife study finds that plan sponsors of the largest workplace retirement plans and their recordkeepers have taken the first steps to help participants secure retirement income but a lot more work needs to be done to pave the way for participants to begin to take action.

MetLifes Retirement Income Practices Study: Perspectives of Plan Sponsors and Recordkeepers for Qualified Plans, released today, examines the dynamics of the plan sponsor-recordkeeper relationship with regard to the provision of lifetime income options in qualified plans. The study assesses whether, and to what extent, plan sponsors of defined benefit (DB) and defined contribution (DC) plans, and recordkeepers are communicating about and closely coordinating their efforts to offer retirement income education, strategies and solutions for their participants. A full copy of the study, which includes considerations for plan sponsors, recordkeepers and policy makers, can be found at

Retirement Income Will Emerge As Biggest Retirement Practice Trend

Both plan sponsors and recordkeepers agree that a focus on retirement income will be one of the biggest retirement practice trends to emerge in the near future. Ten of the 12 recordkeepers surveyed said an increasing focus on retirement income is among their top predictions for the next three-to-five years and one-third of plan sponsors agree it was the most frequently cited prediction among this group.

While recent actions by the U.S. Treasury Department are expected to pave the way for millions of Americans to have better and more accessible retirement income options, plan sponsors and recordkeepers need to work together to facilitate participants ability to understand their retirement income needs and use their plan(s) to generate a paycheck for life, said Cynthia Mallett, vice president, Product & Market Strategies, Corporate Benefit Funding, MetLife.

Plan Sponsors Favor Self-Service Approach for Projecting Retirement Income but Few Participants Interact With the Tools Provided

While many tools have been developed that will show the amount of monthly income a participant might receive during retirement, the research found that such projections are not automatically shown to participants when they view their account balances online, nor are they routinely provided to plan participants on statements summarizing their total and vested account balances. Instead, plan sponsors appear to favor a self-service approach to modeling retirement income projections for their plan participants.

Plan sponsors and recordkeepers recognize that this do-it-yourself model is not taking hold among participants. The majority of recordkeepers surveyed estimated that 25% of plan participants or fewer have made the effort to project their retirement income.

Plan Sponsors Say Participants Want Guarantees

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Plan Sponsors and Recordkeepers Agree That Retirement Income Will Be “The Biggest Trend” Over Next Five Years

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June 6th, 2012 at 11:16 am

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