“’Short’ Falls: Who’s Most Likely to Come up Short in Retirement, and When?” and “Consumer Engagement Among HSA and HRA Enrollees: Findings from the 2013 EBRI/Greenwald & Associates Consumer Engagement in Health Care Survey”

June 2014, Vol. 35, No. 6
Paperback, 20 pp.
PDF, 2,350 kb
Employee Benefit Research Institute, 2014

Download Notes PDF pdf

Executive Summary

“Short" Falls: Who’s Most Likely to Come up Short in Retirement, and When?


• This Notes article provides new results showing how many years into retirement Baby Boomer and Gen Xer households are simulated to run short of money, by preretirement income quartile.


• Under a variety of simulated post-retirement expense scenarios, the lowest preretirement income quartile is the cohort where the vast majority of the retirement readiness shortfall occurs, and the soonest. When nursing home and home health-care expenses are factored in, the number of households in the lowest-income quartile that is projected to run short of money within 20 years of retirement is considerably larger than those in the other three income quartiles combined.


• Extending the results to a maximum of 35 years in retirement (age 100, assuming retirement at age 65), 83 percent of the lowest-income quartile households would run short of money and almost half (47 percent) of those in the second-income quartile would face a similar situation. Only 28 percent of those in the third-income quartile and 13 percent of those in the highest income quartile are simulated to run short of money eventually.


Consumer Engagement Among HSA and HRA Enrollees: Findings from the 2013 EBRI/Greenwald & Associates Consumer Engagement in Health Care Survey


• Health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs) and health savings accounts (HSAs) are very similar, though there are some key differences that may produce different incentives related to using health care services, and thus, different consumer engagement experiences.


• Adults with an HSA were more likely than those with an HRA to exhibit a number of cost-conscious behaviors related to use of health care services. Those with an HSA were more likely than those with an HRA to report that they asked for a generic drug instead of a brand name; checked the price of a service before getting care; asked a doctor to recommend less costly prescriptions; developed a budget to manage health care expenses; and used an online cost-tracking tool provided by the health plan. Adults with an HSA were also more likely than those with an HRA to be engaged in their choice of health plan. Individuals with an HSA were more likely than individuals with an HRA to report that they had participated in a health-risk assessment, health-promotion program, or biometric screening program when it was available.