Five ways to improve retirement math when you haven’t saved


A large segment of American workers are approaching retirement with very little or nothing saved: Among workers age 55 or higher and nearing retirement, 48 percent have saved less than $100,000, according to the Employee Benefit Research Institute. A third have less than $25,000. The savings shortfall means many Americans face the prospect of retiring […]

Is a mandatory U.S. retirement saving plan in your future?


Make a list of the most toxic words in American politics, and “employer mandate” certainly would be in the top 10. Requiring employers to provide health insurance to workers is one of the most controversial features of the Affordable Care Act – along with the requirement that individuals buy insurance. But a mandatory retirement savings […]

How the little-known Saver’s Credit could work better for low-income workers


It sounds too good to be true: some workers can get a double tax benefit by saving for retirement. But the federal Saver’s Credit does just that by providing a second layer of tax incentives for lower-income households beyond the benefit of tax deferral that everyone receives for contributing to a 401(k) or IRA. The […]

How gender pay gap haunts women even in retirement

Kathleen Burns Kingsbury

The gender pay gap is a hot topic in the presidential campaign, and President Barack Obama has been hammering on it, too. Women who work full-time, year-round, made just 79 cents for every dollar paid to their male counterparts in 2014, U.S. Census Bureau data shows. But the injustice of the gender pay gap also […]

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When not to save for retirement


Everyone should save for retirement – that is a mantra we have all heard endlessly. But for many people, saving for retirement actually should be fairly low on the financial priority list – well behind the more immediate goals of building a rainy day fund and reducing their consumer debt. That is evident in new […]

Fed rate hike: Start of something good for retirees?

Janet Yellen, chairman, Federal Reserve

The interest rate hike announced today by the Federal Reserve is a major milestone for retirees, who have been caught between a rock and hard place ever since the Great Recession, with zero interest rates and higher-than-average inflation. The Fed’s quarter-point hike in the benchmark federal funds rate is the first in nearly a decade, […]

Why a mandatory retirement saving plan still isn’t dead in the U.S.

Teresa Ghilarducci

In today’s New York Times, I examine the prospects for a universal, mandatory retirement saving system in the U.S. The idea has long been left for dead, since the concept of employer mandates has been toxic ever since passage of the Affordable Care Act. But some states have begun implementing mandatory programs of their own, […]

Open letter to Mark Zuckerberg: Use that $45 billion to rescue retirement for the next generation


An open letter to Mark Zuckerberg: I hear that you plan to give away 99 percent of your Facebook shares for philanthropic purposes – what a great idea! You already had 1.2 million “likes” this morning for the announcement – and why not? Your timing makes sense – as a new parent, you naturally begin […]

Year-end tips for retirement savers young and not-so-young


It’s year-end, and retirement savers of all ages need to check their to-do lists. These year-end lists often feel to me like endless, laborious chores, so I decided to limit suggestions in my Reuters column this week to just three – one apiece for three stages of life: already retired, close to retirement and just starting […]

Retirement insecurity: Two studies underline housing and income challenges


Next Monday marks the sixth anniversary of the bankruptcy filing of Lehman Brothers, a key event in the Wall Street meltdown that led to the Great Recession. The recession wreaked havoc on the retirement plans of millions of Americans, and two studies released last week suggest that most of us haven’t recovered well. The Joint […]