Press Releases

GAO: Women Face Substantial Challenges in Achieving Financial Security in Retirement

WASHINGTON, DC – A new study released today by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) found while American women have made gains in preparing for retirement, they remain at substantial risk of financial shortfall during their retirement years. The report, a feature of a U.S. Senate Aging Committee hearing held today, reinforces the need for policymakers to seek broad-based solutions for preparing and managing finances.

Americans for Secure Retirement (ASR), a retirement security issues advocacy coalition, cited the GAO study as further evidence that policymakers must acknowledge the importance of retirement security and take steps to provide Americans with access to a guaranteed stream of lifetime income in retirement – a “paycheck for life” – to ensure that they will not outlive their income.

The study noted that women in particular would benefit from these lifetime income options, given women:

(1) have lower levels of retirement income than men, (2) are more likely to live longer, and (3) are also more likely to become widowed. For example, Treasury recently     proposed modifying the required minimum distribution rules so that individuals could use part of their retirement savings to purchase a longevity annuity. This option would provide older women with guaranteed additional income, which may be helpful if they live long lives or outlive a spouse.

“While it’s heartening to know women are making strides in preparing for retirement, the fact remains that with more years out of the workforce to care for family, combined with lower wages and a greater life expectancy, simply being a woman in our society may jeopardize your financial security,” said Shannon Hunt, Executive Director of ASR.

“Further, as the GAO noted, ‘retirement security in America continues to be a national dilemma that transcends gender differences.’ Baby boomers continue to enter retirement, personal savings are dwindling, people are living longer, and traditional sources of guaranteed retirement income, like pensions and Social Security, cover less and less of what retirees need,” Hunt continued. “As a nation, we must stem this crisis by making retirement options that provide steady, lifetime benefits more accessible to Americans.”

The GAO study, “Retirement Security: Women Still Face Challenges” can be found here and additional information on the Senate Aging Hearing can be found here.

About ASR

Americans for Secure Retirement is a broad-based coalition of more than 70 organizations and affiliates committed to raising awareness of the retirement problem and working with policy makers to find solutions that will help people have greater financial control over their retirement. Our members are a diverse group representing women, minorities, farmers, small business owners and the life insurance industry. You can learn more about ASR at www.paycheckforlife.org.

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ASR: New Report Underscores Importance of Retirement Preparedness, Financial Education

WISER survey reveals female nurses, a highly educated and well paid group, not knowledgeable on how to prepare for retirement

WASHINGTON, DC – A new report released today underscores yet again the importance – and productive nature – of providing Americans with better tools as they work to adequately prepare for retirement. Developed by the Women’s Institute for a Secure Retirement (WISER), today’s report is the culmination of a multi-year project aiming to improve nurses’ financial security using educational tools and resources to help combat the obstacles of saving for retirement. WISER is a partner of Americans for Secure Retirement (ASR).

While nurses are among the most educated and well paid of working women, they experience the same barriers in preparing for retirement that all women face. Research shows that nurses know they should plan and save for retirement, but time, resources, and fear get in the way.

“Nurses spend their entire professional lives taking care of other people, not taking care of themselves,” said Cindy Hounsell, President of WISER. “Our research shows convincingly that after attending educational seminars participants recognized the need to put their retirement security above other financial goals, making it a route to independence and a means of not becoming a financial burden on their families as they age.”

An initial survey conducted by the groups showed that a vast majority of nurses – approximately 96 percent – did not feel knowledgeable about financial planning. These results reinforce that many Americans continue to face challenges in preparing for a secure retirement and ensuring that their savings last.

“The importance of programs like this cannot be underestimated,” said Shannon Hunt, Executive Director of ASR. “Past research has taught us that women face additional challenges in preparing for retirement and financial education is a key step in taking control of one’s retirement security.”

ASR a retirement security issues advocacy coalition, upheld the project report as further evidence that policymakers must acknowledge the importance of retirement security and take steps to provide Americans with access to a guaranteed stream of lifetime income in retirement – a “paycheck for life” – to ensure that they will not outlive their income.  ASR and WISER previously collaborated on a study that examined the particular vulnerabilities of women in achieving financial security in retirement.

Details of the new report can be found here: https://www.wiserwomen.org/images/imagefiles/Nurses%20Report.Press%20Release.pdf

About ASR

Americans for Secure Retirement is a broad-based coalition of more than 70 organizations and affiliates committed to raising awareness of the retirement problem and working with policy makers to find solutions that will help people have greater financial control over their retirement. Our members are a diverse group representing women, minorities, farmers, small business owners and the life insurance industry. You can learn more about ASR at www.paycheckforlife.org.

New Study: Boomer Retirement “Severely Depressed”

WASHINGTON, DC – A new study released today found Baby Boomers – 10,000 of which turn 65 every day – lack optimism regarding their financial health in retirement. The report, conducted by Americans for Secure Retirement (ASR) partner the Insured Retirement Institute (IRI) concluded that few Boomers are confident that their financial situation will improve during the next five year as 62 percent believe it will be about the same or that it will deteriorate.

“The recent IRI study confirms that the retirement crisis in America is severe, and that it is getting worse,” said Shannon Hunt, Executive Director of ASR. “Baby Boomers continue to enter retirement. Meanwhile, personal savings are dwindling, people are living longer, and traditional sources of guaranteed retirement income, like pensions and Social Security, cover less and less of what retirees need. As a nation, we must stem this crisis by making retirement options that provide steady, lifetime benefits more accessible to Americans.”

The study also found:

  • Confidence in retirement security is severely depressed with only 36 percent of Boomers being confident in having enough assets to live comfortably during retirement.
  • The confidence shortage was even higher among single and middle-income Boomers. Nearly three out of four single Boomers and 70 percent of middle-income Boomers are not confident in having enough money to live comfortably in retirement.
  • More Boomers are planning to work longer and into their retirement years. For 64 percent of Boomers, employment during retirement will be a source of income and nearly a quarter do not expect to retire until at least age 70.

ASR, a retirement security issues advocacy coalition, upheld the study as further evidence that policymakers must acknowledge the importance of retirement security and takes steps to provide Americans with access to a guaranteed stream of lifetime income in retirement – a “paycheck for life” – to ensure that they will not outlive their income.

The study can be found here.

National Poll Finds Retirement Security Concerns on the Rise

Leading pollsters release bipartisan survey analyzing perceived impact of Washington debt debate on financial security in retirement

WASHINGTON, DC –A new bipartisan, national survey released today reveals that anxiety about retirement continues to grow, with near universal concern about having enough to make ends meet throughout retirement.

The survey, conducted by Lake Research Partners and Public Opinion Strategies,  shows widespread voter anxiety over having the means to maintain a comfortable standard of living throughout retirement. The poll was commissioned by Americans for Secure Retirement (ASR), a broad-based coalition of more than 70 organizations committed to raising awareness of policy issues related to retirement security.

“What we’re seeing is significant, and increasing, concern from Americans of all political stripes about falling short financially during retirement,” said Bill McInturff, founder and partner of Public Opinion Strategies. “Not only are Americans concerned about their own financial health, but they also express widespread concern over how the continued contentious debate in Washington could further undermine what they are planning for in retirement. Even those who feel we must make dramatic cuts to deal with the debt think Congress needs to identify concrete ways to help Americans deal with further retirement instability.”

The survey reveals pervasive anxiety over how efforts to reduce our national debt may impact retirement security. Regardless of party affiliation, the majority of voters are concerned that cuts to Medicare or Social Security would have too significant an impact on retirement or that, if cuts are made, Congress must look for other ways to help Americans better plan for retirement. A majority of respondents also expressed support for proposals such as tax incentives to help save for retirement.

Additionally, the poll findings include:

  • 88 percent of voters expressed concern about “being able to maintain a comfortable standard of living throughout retirement,” with 52 percent of those individuals indicating they are “very concerned.” This is up 15 percent from just last year.
  • Concerns about being able to maintain a standard of living in retirement are extremely high across very diverse demographic groups:
    • White (86%)
    • African-American (88%)
    • Hispanic (96%)
    • Those without any investments (93%)
    • Those with over $100,000 in investments (84%)
    • Financial elites (81%)
    • Retired (81%)
    • Not-retired (89%)
  • A third (31 percent) of all voters believe that if policymakers are going to cut Medicare or Social Security, they must looks for additional ways to help Americans better prepare for retirement.
  • A full 50 percent of voters believe lawmakers should not cut Medicare or Social Security because it would have too significant an impact on retirement. Interestingly, this concern does not strictly fall along party lines. A plurality of Republicans and Tea Party supporters (34 percent of self-identified Tea Party supporters, 39 percent of Republicans) and the majority of Democrats (62 percent) express this viewpoint.
  • 88 percent of voters view tax incentives to help save for retirement as important. This includes 81 percent of Tea Party supporters, 83 percent of Republicans, 86 percent of Independents and 94 percent of Democrats.

“Continued economic uncertainty, high unemployment and instability in the stock market have placed a growing concern on retirement security, and it’s an issue that transcends party affiliation,” said Celinda Lake, President of Lake Research Partners.  “As all eyes turn toward the 2012 election cycle, it’s clear that fears regarding retirement security will play out big not only for Democratic voters, but even the most conservative of Republicans as well.”

“We commissioned this poll to illustrate the overwhelming anxiety that exists about having the means to live comfortably in retirement,” said Shannon Hunt, Executive Director of Americans for Secure Retirement. “As policymakers look for ways to address our national debt, they must find ways to generate peace of mind among Americans as they look toward retirement. Promoting solutions that provide guaranteed lifetime income – for example, annuities –would go a long way toward balancing these concerns.”

The poll was conducted by Public Opinion Strategies, in consultation with Lake Research Partners, as part of a national omnibus survey of 800 registered voters.  The survey took place from September 10-13, 2011.  More information, including a detailed breakdown of the poll results, can be found here.

GAO Report Highlights the Pivotal Role of Annuitization in Ensuring a Financially Secure Retirement

July 5, 2011

WASHINGTON, DC – Americans for Secure Retirement (ASR), a retirement issues advocacy coalition, released the following statement in response to the recent Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on annuities and retirement security. This statement can be attributed to ASR’s Chairman, Thomas Bartell.

“Today’s GAO study confirms what we already know: annuities provide a guaranteed income stream throughout retirement, a paycheck for life that cannot be outlived. We are pleased to see this government study highlight the pivotal role annuitization can play in ensuring financial security in retirement for middle class Americans.  This is particularly important given Social Security covers only a portion of a retirees expense combined with the disappearance of traditional pensions. By providing the growing number of Americans who do not have access to pensions with the option of a guaranteed stream of lifetime income through annuities, retirees can not only receive the same financial benefit as a traditional pension but also the peace of mind associated with it.

“In addition to the middle class broadly, research confirms that annuities can provide real benefits to many demographic classes that are often disproportionately challenged in retirement, including women, Hispanic Americans, small business owners and those who work in the agricultural sector. In general, these groups lack access to traditional employer-sponsored retirement plans. They may also be affected by unique factors that limit their opportunities to manage their retirement assets, including income disparities, unpredictable income based on commodity prices, limited access to traditional savings vehicles and, for women, longer life expectancy.

“As greater focus is placed on stabilizing and growing the U.S. economy, addressing gaps in retirement security is of paramount importance. At this critical moment, increased attention to these issues is necessary. To that end, policymakers should use the findings of this report as a catalyst to make annuities more accessible both to those who have access to a defined contribution plan and to those who do not. From an economic perspective, few efforts would have a more lasting positive effect than helping Americans better improve their retirement outlook. Annuities and other lifetime income products provide an excellent path to achieve that goal, and they should be encouraged.”

The full report can be found here: http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d11400.pdf

About ASR

Americans for Secure Retirement is a broad‐based coalition of more than 70 organizations and affiliates committed to raising awareness of the retirement problem and working with policymakers to find solutions that will help people have greater financial control over their retirement. Our members are a diverse group representing women, minorities, farmers, small business owners and the life insurance industry. You can learn more about ASR at www.paycheckforlife.org.

Retirement and the (Adjusted) American Dream: Talking with Your Family

June 7, 2011


Americans for Secure Retirement and Coalition Partners encourage families to discuss crucial financial retirement security issues

Washington, DC – Summertime, of all seasons, somehow feels the most “American.” Picnics, hamburgers, baseball, swimming pools, graduations, road trips, and camp all represent a wholesome slice of Americana and together comprise part of our vision for the American dream. The term “The American Dream” was coined in the 1930’s, but the ideals behind it are as old as our country itself: hard work can lead to a better life.

The economic uncertainty of the last few years, however, has been a bit of a wake-up call. For example, owning a home – a cornerstone of the American dream – is far more difficult to achieve in today’s credit-constrained, borrow-weary economy. Rising education costs are putting that essential college degree out of reach for many. Career-long job security is a thing of the past.

Retirement as we once conceived it – the so-called “Golden Years” – is no exception. Baby boomers and their younger counterparts alike are simply not preparing adequately for retirement. With Social Security under stress and traditional pensions fading, many have to rethink what retirement will look like.

This summer, as we take time to barbeque together, vacation together or toss the ball around in the yard, families should have a real, honest dialogue about retirement preparation. This means talking with parents, spouses, siblings and all your loved ones about the financial realities of retirement.

Americans for Secure Retirement (ASR) brings together a broad-based coalition of more than 70 member and affiliate organizations committed to raising awareness of the increasing challenges Americans face in having a financially secure retirement. In particular, ASR advocates for greater attention around efforts that would ensure all Americans have access to guaranteed streams of retirement income that cannot be outlived. As summer begins, ASR and our coalition partners including Women’s Institute for a Secure Retirement, the Financial Services Roundtable, Business and Professional Women’s Foundation, Women Impacting Public Policy, American Agri-Women, United States Black Chamber Inc., and the Latino Coalition encourage all Americans to have a candid discussion about how the American dream to have financially secure and peaceful Golden Years can still become a reality.

Some Essential Questions to Guide the Discussion:

1. When am I hoping to retire? Deciding the timing of your retirement is important, and it is equally important to have a target date in mind. However, to retire when you want to, you must be adequately prepared and consider a number of variables. The answers to some of the questions below will help shape your decisions. Keep in mind the biggest financial risk retirees may face, experts say, is not knowing how long they will live – and therefore, not knowing how long their resources must last.

2. Am I making use of an employer-sponsored retirement plan? If you have access to an employer-sponsored plan, you should participate in it, especially if your employer matches a percentage of your contribution. Unfortunately, 70 million American workers lack access or do not participate in any employer-based retirement benefits. Only 25.6 percent of Hispanics are covered by employer-sponsored retirement plans, compared to 42.5 percent of whites and 40 percent of African-Americans. If you don’t have a retirement savings plan at work, you should learn about Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) and how they work. Another important retirement tool is the annuity. It allows you to accumulate retirement savings on a tax-deferred basis and then reap the benefits of your savings when you retire in the form of regular payments that can last for life. This is also sometimes referred to as annuitization.

3. Am I on-track with my retirement savings? Many Americans lost a significant amount of savings during the economic turmoil of recent years. The Congressional Budget Office reported that Americans lost over $2 trillion in accumulated retirement assets in their 401(k), pensions and other traditional retirement savings during the 2007-2008 dip in the market. In addition, due to economic uncertainty, 20 percent of workers actually stopped putting money into traditional retirement accounts at one point. You should reassess your goals and savings on an annual basis and readjust if necessary.

4. What will my expenses be in retirement? This is a tough one. You may not be commuting. You may not need dry-cleaning on a regular basis. If you are fortunate, your mortgage might even be paid off. But it is tough to determine your actual expenses – from food to health care to funding the activities of your “dreams.”

In fact, not many Americans take a good hard look at their retirement expenses. According to the Department of Labor, only 43 percent of Americans have calculated how much they need to save for retirement. In addition, three out of five middle class new retirees can expect to outlive their financial assets if they attempt to maintain their pre-retirement standard of living, according to an Ernst & Young study. To avoid outliving their savings, the report indicated that Americans retiring today with no guaranteed source of income beyond Social Security will have to reduce their standard of living by an average of 32 percent. For example, if you are currently living on $3,000 a month, you would have to learn to live on just over $2,000 a month.

The uncertainty of expenses in retirement makes it difficult to manage your savings to last the 20 to 30 years or more of retirement. As a result, you should consider vehicles that address this uncertainty and give you peace of mind in retirement through guaranteed income streams.

5. Where will my retirement income come from? How reliant am I on personal savings? Clearly, this is extremely important. Traditionally, retirees have relied on a combination of Social Security, pensions and personal savings. Today, Social Security covers only 38 percent of what is needed in retirement. At the same time, pensions are disappearing and many workers do not have access to any kind of employer-sponsored retirement plan. Therefore, to achieve an adequate standard of living, an increasing number of American retirees must rely on and manage personal savings. To be successful in this effort, you must have a clear picture of your assets and income streams in retirement to avoid running out of money. Notably, annuitization provides a steady stream of guaranteed income in retirement, reducing the risks that retirees will outlive their savings or face significant reductions to their standard of living.

6. How should I manage my retirement savings? In addition to the need to increase personal savings, these shifts in our nation’s retirement system requires an increasing number of retirees to manage their savings on their own and manage them so they provide a steady stream of income for the 20 to 30 years or more many will spend in retirement. While this is not easy on its face, there are retirement vehicles that can help. For example, an important piece of the retirement puzzle is ensuring you have access to guaranteed streams of retirement income that cannot be outlived. An annuity can help Americans better manage their savings and achieve their retirement “American Dream” by providing a steady stream of guaranteed income in retirement.

It is clear that many, many Americans face challenges in preparing for a secure retirement – in particular ensuring that their savings last. Annuities are the only product that can provide Americans with a guaranteed stream of lifetime income through retirement – a “paycheck for life” – to ensure that they will not outlive their income.

To address these challenges, Americans for Secure Retirement strongly supports public policy that makes secure retirement vehicles, such as annuities with their various ways of guaranteeing lifetime income, more accessible and affordable to all Americans.

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To read the pdf version of this release, please click here.

With 79 Million Boomers on the Brink of Retirement, Comprehensive Financial Planning is Critical

April 11, 2011

Americans for Secure Retirement Joins Education, Advocacy and Industry Leaders in Sponsoring National Retirement Planning Week®

WASHINGTON, DC — In the days leading up to National Retirement Planning Week, Americans for Secure Retirement (ASR) and several of its coalition partners spoke out regarding the importance of comprehensive planning for retirement.

This year, the first of 79 million baby boomers will turn 65, while 4 million boomers will turn 60 each year for the next 18 years. For many, these milestones will present a much-needed opportunity to reassess their level of retirement preparedness. ASR research has found that 73 percent of voters expressed concern about “being able to maintain a comfortable standard of living throughout retirement,” with 49 percent of those individuals indicating they are “very concerned.”

To help raise public awareness of the need to comprehensively plan for retirement, ASR joins the National Retirement Planning Coalition (NRPC) in sponsoring National Retirement Planning Week® from April 11-15.

“The economic downturn, high unemployment and declines in the stock market have placed a growing concern on retirement security. Moreover, numerous polls released have shown that majorities of Americans are concerned about their ability to have the resources needed for a secure retirement,” said Shannon Hunt, ASR Executive Director. “National National Retirement Planning Week is an opportunity to stem this rising tide of anxiety by increasing awareness surrounding comprehensive retirement planning and preparedness. Specifically, greater attention must be paid to ensuring all Americans have access to guaranteed streams of retirement income that cannot be outlived.”

A number of coalition members representing women, minorities, and farming communities have also joined ASR in underscoring the importance of NRPW:

Hector Barreto, Chairman of the Latino Coalition:
“Hispanic Americans face greater challenges in obtaining a secure retirement than the average population. Within our community, there is a lack of retirement preparation, less access to employer-sponsored retirement plans, lower levels of personal savings and inadequate financial literacy. During National Retirement Planning Week, we will reiterate to all members of the Latino Coalition the importance of comprehensive retirement planning to ensure you have the resources necessary to maintain your standard of living throughout your lifetime.”

Cindy Hounsell, President of the Women’s Institute for a Secure Retirement (WISER):
“For a variety of reasons, women’s retirement income is only about 63 percent of their male counterparts. The disparity is even greater for African American and Hispanic women. This means many women barely get by financially during their retirement years. WISER’s experience providing retirement education for nearly 15 years indicates that when individuals are given clear, relevant communication showing how to take control of their own employer retirement plan or how to start planning for retirement – they will do so. We find this true of individuals no matter what their financial circumstances. National Retirement Planning Week is an excellent opportunity to get the conversation started.”

Gus West, Board Chair and President for The Hispanic Institute:
“Hispanics in the United States must execute a plan that will allow them to maintain a comfortable standard of living throughout their retirement. Like US immigrant communities of the past, Hispanics have challenges in education attainment, income, job retirement plans, and savings plans. The fact that many Hispanics Americans are unbanked or under-banked puts them at a financial disadvantage. All of these issues contribute to poor retirement planning. During National Retirement Planning Week, we encourage members of the Hispanic community to look for a variety of solutions to ensure a sound retirement. Education, access to retirement planning vehicles, and increased retirement savings, all play important roles in addressing this critical national challenge. Hispanics must manage savings and investments in a manner that will assure income that lasts throughout the retirement years.”

Chris Wilson, President of American Agri-Women:
“America’s rural and farming communities are influenced by factors that make retirement planning particularly important. Farmers are less likely to be covered by traditional pensions and there is extreme variability in farm income due to largely uncontrollable fluctuations in commodity prices, weather, and other factors. For women in farming communities, the situation is even more concerning. Women typically have fewer working years than men, make less and live longer. These disparities lead to lower savings and retirement income and smaller payouts from Social Security, ultimately resulting in a greater risk of poverty in retirement.”

The National Retirement Planning Coalition is headed by the Insured Retirement Institute, and includes the American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI), Americans for Secure Retirement (ASR), Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, Defined Contribution Institutional Investment Association (DCIIA), Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI), Financial Services Forum, Financial Services Institute (FSI), Financial Services Roundtable (FSR), National Association of Fixed Annuities (NAFA), NICSA, Retirement Income Industry Association (RIIA), The American College, The Aspen Institute Initiative on Financial Security (Aspen IFS) and Women’s Institute for a Secure Retirement (WISER).

The Coalition recognizes that the need to educate Americans on retirement planning is an ongoing effort and is committed to making this a national priority. The National Retirement Planning Week® and other coalition activities will demonstrate that it is possible to “Retire On Your Terms” if comprehensive retirement plans are properly developed and managed. To support these education efforts, the coalition maintains a year-round website – www.retireonyourterms.org – offering resources to both consumers and financial professionals alike, in order to help them stay focused on long-term financial goals.

The 2011 National Retirement Planning Week® events include:
• April 11: EBRI President and CEO Dallas Salisbury hosts a webinar on consumer retirement readiness, leveraging data from EBRI’s 2011 Retirement Confidence Survey.
• April 12: IRI President and CEO Cathy Weatherford moderates a media forum with industry leaders on evolving perceptions of risk management in the insured retirement market. New IRI research on Boomers and retirement will be released onsite as well.
• April 13: IRI hosts a practice management webinar for financial advisors.
• April 14: The Coalition releases a client-approved tip-sheet for financial advisors on how consumers can formulate a plan for lifelong financial retirement health.
• April 15: The Aspen Institute hosts a Washington, D.C.-based roundtable on retirement issues.

Partial Annuitization Provision on Way to President for Signature

September 23, 2010

ASR Applauds Passage of Bill That Will Help Americans Achieve a Financially Secure Retirement

WASHINGTON, DC – Americans for Secure Retirement (ASR), a retirement security advocacy coalition, released the following statement in response to the inclusion of a partial annuitization provision in the Small Business Jobs Act which was passed today by the U.S. House of Representatives. The U.S. Senate passed the bill last week and it will now be submitted to the President for signature into law. This statement can be attributed to ASR’s Chairman, Thomas Bartell.

“We applaud the House of Representatives today for passing legislation that includes an important provision to provide Americans with much needed flexibility to tailor the level of guaranteed income to fit their needs in retirement. Allowing the partial annuitization of individual annuities is an issue championed first by Rep. Earl Pomeroy (D-ND) in his Retirement Security Needs Lifetime Pay Act (H.R. 2748). This important policy change will give retirees the ability to reduce their risk of outliving their savings or facing significant reductions to their standard of living by making it easier for individuals to generate guaranteed retirement income in increments as it is needed.

Annuitization is the conversion of the account balance of a deferred annuity into a stream of retirement income payments. Partial annuitization refers to the conversion of only a portion of the account balance into an income stream, while leaving the remaining balance intact. Under current law, there is some uncertainty whether a partial annuitization is taxed the same as a full annuitization, or whether it is taxed less favorably. This provision clarifies that the tax treatment is the same, which will encourage more individuals to choose lifetime income options in retirement.

An ASR commissioned study conducted by Ernst & Young last year revealed the profound risks that a majority of Americans face in outliving their retirement savings and how guaranteed lifetime income in retirement dramatically improves the situation. In addition, a survey commissioned by ASR and released this week found 73 percent of American voters expressed concern about being able to maintain a comfortable standard of living throughout retirement and 62 percent of voters believe that creating more retirement options that help retirees make sure their savings last throughout their lifetime should be the top or one of the top priorities of Congress.”

The provision was first introduced to the Small Business bill by Senators John Kerry (D-MA) and John Ensign (R-NV). ASR thanks Rep. Pomeroy for his consistent leadership in the retirement security area, and Senators Kerry and Ensign for their work on this important retirement issue.”

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To learn more about partial annuitization, please click here

ASR Applauds Senate Passage of Partial Annuitization Provision in Small Business Bill

September 16, 2010

Will Help Americans Achieve a Financially Secure Retirement

WASHINGTON, DC – Americans for Secure Retirement (ASR), a retirement security advocacy coalition, released the following statement in response to the inclusion of a partial annuitization provision in the Small Business Jobs Act which was passed today by the U.S. Senate. The provision was first introduced to the bill by Senators John Kerry (D-MA) and John Ensign (R-NV). This statement can be attributed to ASR’s Chairman, Thomas Bartell.

“We applaud the Senate passage of the Small Business Jobs Act today. This legislation includes an important provision to provide Americans with greater flexibility to tailor the level of guaranteed income to fit their needs in retirement.  Partial annuitization allows an individual to convert a portion of an existing annuity contract into an income stream while keeping the rest in the form of savings which could be used to address future income needs.

Allowing the partial annuitization of individual annuities is an issue championed first by Rep. Earl Pomeroy (D-ND) in his Retirement Security Needs Lifetime Pay Act (H.R. 2748).  This important policy change will give retirees the ability to reduce their risk of outliving their savings or facing significant reductions to their standard of living by making it easier for individuals to generate guaranteed retirement income in increments as it is needed.

An ASR commissioned study conducted by Ernst & Young last year revealed the profound risks that a majority of Americans face in outliving their retirement savings and how guaranteed lifetime income in retirement dramatically improves the situation. In addition, a survey commissioned by ASR and released this week found 73 percent of American voters expressed concern about being able to maintain a comfortable standard of living throughout retirement and 62 percent of voters believe that creating more retirement options that help retirees make sure their savings last throughout their lifetime should be the top or one of the top priorities of Congress.”

ASR Weighs in at Public Hearing on “Lifetime Income Options for Participants and Beneficiaries in Retirement Plans”

September 15, 2010

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, ASR and members of its coalition weighted in on a joint public hearing between the Departments of Labor and Treasury, for the purposes of gathering additional information on “discrete technical issues and proposals raised in RFI submissions.”

The following individuals and organizations submitted testimony. Click on the names below to read testimony submitted: