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Pre-Retirement Lump-Sum Pension Distributions and Retirement Income Security: Evidence from the Health and Retirement Study

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  • Engelhardt, Gary V.
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    Abstract

    This paper uses the Health and Retirement Study to examine the extent of retirement wealth erosion from pre-retirement lump-sum pension distributions. There is little evidence that spent distributions have resulted in significant pension leakage. If spent distributions had been rolled over into a tax-qualified plan, they would have represented 5-11 percent of pension and Social Security wealth for the median household that spent a distribution. However, one-quarter of the households that spent distributions--which is 2.25 percent of all households age 51 to 61--could have increased retirement wealth by 25 percent or more had the distributions been rolled over.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by National Tax Association in its journal National Tax Journal.

    Volume (Year): 55 (2002)
    Issue (Month): 4 (December)
    Pages: 665-85

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    Handle: RePEc:ntj:journl:v:55:y:2002:i:4:p:665-85

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    1. Andrew A. Samwick & Jonathan Skinner, 1996. "Abandoning the Nest Egg? 401(k) Plans and Inadequate Pension Saving," NBER Working Papers 5568, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Karen E. Dynan & Jonathan Skinner & Stephen P. Zeldes, 2000. "Do the Rich Save More?," NBER Working Papers 7906, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Steven F. Venti & David A. Wise, 2000. "Choice, Chance, and Wealth Dispersion at Retirement," NBER Working Papers 7521, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Steven F. Venti & David A. Wise, 1990. "Aging and the Income Value of Housing Wealth," NBER Working Papers 3547, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Burman, Leonard E. & Coe, Norma B. & Gale, William G., 1999. "Lump Sum Distributions from Pension Plans: Recent Evidence and Issues for Policy and Research," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 52(n. 3), pages 553-62, September.
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    Cited by:
    1. Gary V. Engelhardt & Anil Kumar, 2007. "Employer matching and 401(k) saving: Evidence from the health and retirement study," NBER Chapters, in: Trans-Atlantic Public Economics Seminar (TAPES), Public Policy and Retirement, pages 1920-1943 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Engelhardt, Gary V., 2003. "Reasons for job change and the disposition of pre-retirement lump-sum pension distributions," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 81(3), pages 333-339, December.
    3. Hurd, Michael & Panis, Constantijn, 2006. "The choice to cash out pension rights at job change or retirement," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(12), pages 2213-2227, December.
    4. James Poterba & Joshua Rauh & Steven Venti & David Wise, 2006. "Defined Contribution Plans, Defined Benefit Plans, and the Accumulation of Retirement Wealth," NBER Working Papers 12597, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Carolina Fugazza, 2011. "Tracking the Italian employees'TFR over their working life careers," CeRP Working Papers 125, Center for Research on Pensions and Welfare Policies, Turin (Italy).
    6. James J. Choi & David Laibson & Brigitte C. Madrian & Andrew Metrick, 2004. "Saving or Retirement on the Path of Least Resistance," Levine's Bibliography 122247000000000606, UCLA Department of Economics.

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