Confidence Falls for 63 Percent of Defined-Contribution Savings Plan Participants

By Staff Report

Apr. 8, 2009

A BGI-sponsored survey shows 63 percent of defined-contribution plan participants have grown less confident in the past year about reaching their retirement goals.

Just less than 50 percent of all participants surveyed said their employer should offer an investment option with guaranteed income in retirement. For those who are worried they will never be able to retire, 61 percent said a guaranteed income option would improve their 401(k) plan.

Forty-one percent of respondents are unsure they will be able to retire as planned, and 46 percent are worried they will never be able to retire.

Among those worried they might never be able to retire, 41 percent plan to delay their retirement and 58 percent plan to work until they die, according to the survey.

Almost half of all participants surveyed said they would save more to make up for their losses of the past year, but only one in four who say they’ll never be able to retire said they would save more and 19 percent of those worried they will never be able to retire said they have no idea how to recover their retirement losses.

Only 4 percent indicated they will stop DC contributions, and half of all participants said they will not make any changes to their DC accounts in the next 12 months.

The survey, “401(k) Participant Attitudes, Behavior, and Intentions,” was sponsored by BGI and the Boston Research Group. It polled 1,000 active 401(k) plan participants during March.

Filed by John D’Antona Jr. of Pensions & Investments, a sister publication of Workforce Management. To comment, e-mail

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