Retirees Rely on Supplemental Retirement Plans

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

As many local governments have reduced the level of pension benefits they provide to new hires, the importance of boosting savings through supplemental retirement plans has grown, yet very little is known about these plans. A new issue brief from the Center for State and Local Government Excellence, Supplemental Retirement Plans Offered by City and County Governments,examines the structure and terms of supplemental savings plans offered by 20 cities and counties around the country and finds that 15 of the local government employers offer only one type of plan, and all 20 local government employers in the study offer at least one 457 savings plan. Most plans allow loans, but employers match employee contributions in just four plans, and employees need more financial literacy and good information about plans to make optimal decisions when they have more choices to make. More choices for employees may not be better if the quality of the plans, in terms of fees and investment options, is inferior to the quality of a more restricted access model.