What’s Happening with Retirement Saving and Retirement Incomes? Better Data Tell a Better Story

Americans are doing a much better job of saving for retirement than is commonly supposed. Despite claims of declining retirement-plan coverage, more Americans have retirement plans today than in the so-called golden age of traditional defined benefit pensions, and new 401(k) rules make today’s workers much more likely to receive benefits once they retire.

Contributions to retirement plans are at record levels compared to the past. Contrary to claims that employers have abandoned retirement saving, employer contributions to retirement plans are also at a historical peak.

The policy debate over retirement security ignores much of the best data and research available. While better information does not erase the challenges we face in improving our diverse retirement-saving system, it can help inform the debate.

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