Tuesday, August 16, 2016

From California, a Better Way to Retire - The New York Times

From California, a Better Way to Retire - The New York Times: "At any given moment, about half of the private-sector employees in the United States — some 60 million people — do not have any type of employer-sponsored retirement plan. The result is a growing American underclass, in which a third of current retirees live almost entirely on Social Security and fully half of future retirees will face reduced standards of living. Worse, the coverage gap has long proved intractable, with Congress and the financial industry unable or unwilling to design or support truly simple and low-cost retirement savings plans.

And yet, retirement prospects are about to improve for the 6.8 million employees without retirement coverage who work in California for businesses with five or more workers. Next week, the California Legislature is set to vote on a plan, nearly four years in the making, to automatically enroll most uncovered workers in individual retirement savings accounts. Employee advocates are confident the measure will pass, and Gov. Jerry Brown is expected to sign it. When that happens, Californians will gain more security — and the rest of the nation will gain a national model for promoting retirement savings.

Under the plan, uncovered employees would have up to 5 percent of pay deducted from their paychecks, unless they opted out. Those contributions would be pooled and managed by investment professionals chosen by the state through a bidding process. The plan, called the California Secure Choice Retirement Program, would be overseen by a board of public- and private-sector leaders, appointed by the governor and the Legislature in 2012, when the legislative effort first got underway."

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