Overcoming the Saving SlumpHow to Increase the Effectiveness of Financial Education and Saving Programs

Overcoming the Saving SlumpHow to Increase the Effectiveness of Financial Education and Saving Programs

Annamaria Lusardi

Print publication date: 2013

ISBN: 9780226497099

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

Abstract

The great majority of working Americans are unprepared to face the difficult task of planning for retirement. In fact, the personal savings rate has been holding steady at zero for several years, down from 8 percent in the mid-1980s. This book explores the many challenges facing workers in the transition from a traditional defined benefit pension system one that requires more individual responsibility, analyzing the considerable impediments to saving and evaluating financial literacy programs devised by employers and the government. Mapping the changing landscape of pensions and the rise of defined contribution plans, the author and others investigate new methods for stimulating saving and promoting financial education, drawing on the experience of the United States as well as countries that have privatized their welfare systems, including Sweden and Chile. This volume pinpoints where human resources departments, the financial industry, and government officials have succeeded—or failed—in bridging the way to a new retirement system.

Table of Contents

Front Matter

Introduction

Annamaria Lusardi

Part I The Shift from Defined Benefit to Defined Contribution Pensions and Financial Regulation

Chapter One The Changing Landscape of Pensions in the United States

James M. Poterba, Steven F. Venti, and David A. Wise

Part II Portfolio Choice, Life-Cycle Funds, and Annuities

Part III Improving Financial Education and Saving Programs

Part IV Learning from the United States and Other Countries