EBRI Notes

“A Little Help: The Impact of On-line Calculators and Financial Advisors on Setting Adequate Retirement-Savings Targets: Evidence from the 2013 Retirement Confidence Survey,” and “'Post' Script: What’s Next for Employment-Based Health Benefits?”

Mar 31, 2013 28  pages


Retirement-Savings Targets:

• Those using an on-line calculator or asking a financial advisor appear to set more adequate savings targets, as measured by the probability of not running short of money in retirement.

• Those in the lowest-income quartile show a 9.1?12.6 percentage point improvement (depending on family/gender) in the probability of not running short of money in retirement if a financial advisor has been asked, and a 14.6?18.2 percentage point increase if an on-line calculator is used.

• Those who “guessed” at a retirement savings target were less likely to choose an adequate target.

Health Benefits:

At EBRI’s 71st policy forum, some of the nation’s top health policy experts raised these points, among others:

• Recent discussions in Congress to possibly cap or reduce the tax exclusion for health benefits could result in a big shock for workers.

• A major problem underlying rising healthcare spending is the nation’s rapidly aging population.

• While health care cost trends made change inevitable, PPACA exacerbated the impact on two key fronts: the administrative difficulties in dealing with health exchanges, and the fees imposed on employers.

• For small employers, the attraction of having workers get health coverage through a health exchange (rather than their jobs) is going to be very strong.