May 2018 Policy Forum #83
Retirement, Health, and Financial Wellbeing



Exploring the 'Gig Economy' and the Future of Benefits

There is a lot of talk about the emerging gig economy and its potential impact on workforce dynamics and benefits.  But there are many unknowns around what is really happening in this space: is it meaningfully different from the trends we’ve already been seeing and how will it impact workplace benefits?  This panel will explore what we already know, what we still don’t know, and what are the critical inputs that are important to understand in terms of determining the potential impact on retirement readiness of the American workforce. 

  • Moderated by: Jake Biscoglio, VP Strategic Initiatives, Prudential Financial
  • Julie Stitzel, Managing Director of Policy and Strategic Initiatives, C_TEC (Chamber Technology Engagement Center), U.S. Chamber of Commerce
  • Kendra Isaacson, Senior Pensions Counsel - Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions
  • Jack VanDerhei, Research Director, EBRI

Student Loans: Is it Time for Employers to Step In?

One of the most pressing issues facing Americans is paying for college.  The result has been a sharp increase in the number of workers with student loan debt. Employers recognizing this pressing issue have begun to examine how they can help their workers with this issue, but in addition how programs designed to assist with student debt can impact the attraction and retention of young graduates. This panel will explore the overall extent of student loan debt; the experience of an early-adopter employer addressing this issue for their employees; the marketplace for employer programs on student loan debt, including the types of programs being used and reach of these programs among employers; and legislative proposals under consideration in Congress to help Americans with student loan debt.

  • Moderated by: Michael Doshier, Global Head of Retirement Marketing, Franklin Templeton Investments
  • Cindy Silva, Head of Financial Wellness Strategy, Fidelity Investments
  • Kate Winget, Chief Sales Officer, Gradifi
  • Rachel Collins, counsel, Congressman Rodney Davis
  • Craig Copeland, Senior Research Associate, EBRI

The Intersection of Health and Wealth: The Role of Health Savings Accounts (HSAs)

Unlike contributions to a 401(k) or IRA, HSAs benefit from a triple-tax advantage: contributions to the account are deductible from taxable income, any interest or other capital earnings on assets in the account build up tax free, and distributions for qualified medical expenses are excluded from taxable income. Because of the triple-tax advantage, HSAs are often viewed as a supplement to retirement plans. This panel will examine the role of HSAs in retirement planning and financial wellbeing more generally. Data on how individuals are using HSAs will be presented. The panel will also examine how to better engage individuals in using their HSAs as well as public policy issues.

  • Moderated by: Kris Haltmeyer, VP, Health Policy and Analysis, Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (BCBSA)
  • Doug Fisher, Director of Retirement Policy, American Retirement Association
  • Todd Berkley, SVP & Managing Director, BenefitWallet
  • Paul Fronstin, Director, Health Research & Education Program, EBRI

Fireside chat: Congressional Staff Perspectives from Both Sides of the Aisle

  • Interviewed by: Michael Kreps, Principal, Groom Law Group
  • Chris Allen, Senior Advisor for Benefits, Committee on Finance
  • Kara Getz, Chief Counsel at U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Ways & Means

EBRI-ERF holds a minimum of two policy forums per year. Their goal is to bring together a cross-section of EBRI sponsors, congressional and executive branch staff, benefit experts, and representatives from academia, interest groups, and labor to examine public policy issues. The forums are roundtable discussions featuring verbal and written exchange among speakers and participants.

  • July 12, 2017 -- HSA-Eligible Health Plan Enrollment
  • May 11, 2017 -- Retirement Policy Directions in 2017 and Beyond
  • December 15, 2016 -- Retirement and Health Policy in 2017 and Beyond
  • May 12, 2016 -- Employee Engagement in Health and Retirement Challenges and Reforms
  • December 10, 2015 --Topics: Retirement Readiness; Cadillac Tax on High Cost Health Plans
  • May 14, 2015 -- Evidence on Defined Contribution Health and Retirement: The Road Ahead
  • December 11, 2014 -- Measured Matters
  • May 15, 2014 -- "Crisis" Management: Uncertainty and the Workplace
  • December 12, 2013 -- Employee Benefits: Today (2013), Tomorrow (+35), and Yesterday (-35)
  • May 9, 2013 -- Decisions, Decisions: Choices That Affect Retirement Income Adequacy
  • December 13, 2012 -- "Post" Script: What's Next for Employment-Based Health Benefits
  • May 10, 2012 -- "After" Math: The Impact and Influence of Incentives on Benefit Policy
  • December 15, 2011—Innovations in Employment-Based Health Benefits: Lessons Learned for Public Policy
  • May 12, 2011 Policy Forum -- Is There a Future for Retirement?
  • December 9, 2010 Policy Forum -- Innovations in Employment-Based Health Benefits

  • May 13, 2010 Policy Forum -- Retirement Income Adequacy: How Big Is the Gap and How Might the Market Respond?

  • December 10, 2009 Policy Forum -- Employers, Workers and the Future of Employment-Based Health Benefits

  • May 7, 2009 Policy Forum -- Decumulation/Retirement Income in Defined Contribution Plans
  • December 4, 2008 Policy Forum -- Outlook for Consumer/Patient Engagement in Health Care -- 30 Years Into the Experiment
  • May 8, 2008 Policy Forum -- Defined Contribution Plans in a Post-PPA Environment
  • December 6, 2007 Policy Forum -- The Future of Employment-Based Health Benefits: Will Employers Reach a Tipping Point?
  • May 3, 2007 Policy Forum -- The Impact of PPA, FASB, and GASB on Defined Benefit Pension Plans

  • December 7, 2006 Policy Forum -- Consumer-Driven Health Benefits, 2nd Annual EBRI/Commonwealth Fund Survey

  • December 8, 2005 Policy Forum -- Consumer-Driven Health Benefits
  • May 5, 2005 Policy Forum -- Retirement Income Security: A Look At Social Security, Employment-Based Retirement Plans and Health Savings Accounts (HSAs)
  • December 2, 2004 Policy Forum -- Controlling Costs and Improving Quality for Retirees: Can It Improve the Health System Overall?

  • May 6, 2004 Policy Forum -- ERISA At 30: The Decline of Private-Sector Defined Benefit Promises and Annuity Payments? What Will It Mean?
  • December 4, 2003 Policy Forum -- Assessing Future Retirement Security with the Results of the EBRI/ERF Retirement Security Projection Model
  • May 8, 2003 Policy Forum -- Will Wider Use Of Evidence-Based Medicine Significantly Enhance Health Care Quality And Affordability? Implications for Consumer-Driven Health Benefits
  • December 5, 2002 Policy Forum -- Will Today's Workers Retire With Adequate Income? And, How Are Today's Retirees Surviving From A Financial Perspective?

  • May 2, 2002 Policy Forum -- Consumer Driven Health Benefits: A Continuing Evolution?

  • December 6, 2001 Policy Forum -- The Ongoing Move to Defined Contribution and Individual Account Plans: Issues and Implications

  • May 3, 2001 Policy Forum -- Defined Contribution Health Benefits - The Next Evolution

    EBRI-ERF Policy Forums and Publications, 1979–2003