Wednesday, April 24, 2013

ACLI Responds to Frontline Program on Retirement Savings

Retirement Savings the Activity of a Lifetime

Washington, D.C. (April 24, 2013) - Saving adequately for retirement is one of the most important financial objectives for working Americans. Workers who are diligent about saving for retirement are more likely to maintain their standard of living in retirement. Retirement savings is literally the activity of a lifetime.

There is no better way to save for retirement than through a workplace retirement plan. Workplace retirement plans can provide employees with numerous convenience features, including payroll deduction, a menu of investment options, and tax deferral. Saving through the workplace can also reduce an employee’s taxable income. Moreover, many employers assist the retirement security of their employees by matching a portion of retirement plan contributions.

At the same time, certain types of workplace retirement plans, such as 401(k)s, are well suited for today’s mobile workforce. Workers are able to continue accumulating retirement savings even if they change jobs several times. They need not fear losing their pensions if they leave their current employer.

We hope the Frontline program will encourage workers to rededicate themselves to saving for retirement. Regarding, the Frontline program, ACLI makes the following points:

  • Last year, new Labor Department rules on retirement plan fee disclosure went into effect. These rules provide comprehensive disclosure of plan service and investment related fees and charges to plan sponsors and participants. For more information, click here.
  • Fees can vary depending on the services provided. Plans and participants receive a wide range of services, such as investment management, recordkeeping, investment education, advice and general administration. It is important to look holistically at the plan and the services provided to determine whether fees are reasonable.
  • Life insurance companies offer benefits not available from other service providers, such as guaranteed lifetime income products. Naturally, these additional benefits come at a cost.
  • The marketplace for retirement plan services is highly competitive. Competition helps assure that fees are reasonable.
  • Employers serve as plan fiduciaries, choosing investment options for the plan, ensuring service provider fees are reasonable.
  • Corporations need help from insurance companies to manage pension risk challenges and keep pension promises to employees.

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The American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI) is a Washington, D.C.-based trade association with more than 300 member companies operating in the United States and abroad. ACLI advocates in federal, state, and international forums for public policy that supports the industry marketplace and the 75 million American families that rely on life insurers’ products for financial and retirement security. ACLI members offer life insurance, annuities, retirement plans, long-term care and disability income insurance, and reinsurance, representing more than 90 percent of industry assets and premiums. Learn more at www.acli.com.

Date Posted: April 24, 2013
Document ID: NR13-013
Contact: Jack Dolan, (202) 624-2418
Whit Cornman, (202) 624-2442
Steven Brostoff, (202-624-2419