Are Retirement Savings Too Exposed to Market Risk?
AbstractThe stock market, as measured by the broad-based Wilshire 5000, declined by 42 percent between its peak in October 9, 2007 and October 9, 2008. Over that one-year period, the value of equities in pension plans and household portfolios fell by $7.4 trillion. Of that $7.4 trillion decline, $2.0 trillion occurred in 401(k)s and Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs), $1.9 trillion in public and private defined benefit plans, and $3.6 trillion in household non-pension assets. This brief documents where the declines occurred. This information is interesting and important in its own right. But the declines also highlight the fragility of our emerging pension arrangements. Today the declines were divided equally between defined benefit and defined contribution plans, but in the future individuals will bear the full brunt of market turmoil as the shift to 401(k)s continues. Much of the reform discussion regarding private sector employer-sponsored pensions has focused on extending coverage. But the current financial tsunami also underlines the need to construct arrangements where the full market risk does not fall on pension participants.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Center for Retirement Research in its series Issues in Brief with number ib2008-8-16.
Length: 8 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2008
Date of revision: Oct 2008
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Hovey House, 140 Commonwealth Avenue, Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
Phone: (617) 552-1762
Fax: (617) 552-0191
Web page: http://crr.bc.edu/
More information through EDIRC
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
You can help add them by filling out this form.
CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
- Alicia H. Munnell & Jean-Pierre Aubry & Dan Muldoon, 2008. "The Financial Crisis and State/Local Defined Benefit Plans," Issues in Brief ib2008-8-19, Center for Retirement Research, revised Nov 2008.
- Alicia H. Munnell & Anthony Webb & Alex Golub-Sass, 2008. "How Much Risk is Acceptable?," Issues in Brief ib2008-8-20, Center for Retirement Research, revised Nov 2008.
- Alicia H. Munnell & Jean-Pierre Aubry & Dan Muldoon, 2008. "The Financial Crisis and Private Defined Benefit Plans," Issues in Brief ib2008-8-18, Center for Retirement Research, revised Nov 2008.
- Alicia H. Munnell & Francesca Golub-Sass & Dan Muldoon, 2009. "An Update on 401(k) Plans: Insights From the 2007 SCF," Issues in Brief ib2009-9-5, Center for Retirement Research, revised Mar 2009.
- Alicia H. Munnell & Alex Golub-Sass & Richard W. Kopcke & Anthony Webb, 2009. "What Does It Cost To Guarantee Returns?," Issues in Brief ib2009-9-4, Center for Retirement Research, revised Feb 2009.
- Alicia H. Munnell & Richard W. Kopcke & Francesca Golub-Sass & Dan Muldoon, 2009. "An Update on 401(k) Plans: Insights from the 2007 Survey of Consumer Finance," Working Papers, Center for Retirement Research at Boston College wp2009-26, Center for Retirement Research, revised Nov 2009.
- Ashby H.B. Monk & Steven A. Sass, 2009. "Risk Pooling and the Market Crash: Lessons From Canada's Pension Plan," Issues in Brief ib2009-9-12, Center for Retirement Research, revised Jun 2009.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Amy Grzybowski) or (Christopher F Baum).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.