Employers Vs. Government: Who Wins in Retirement Security?

More evidence that employees are looking to employers for help with retirement security

401k, retirement security, employers, governmentThey'd love to lock down a paycheck for life.

Employees believe employers can improve their retirement security to a much greater degree than the government, and would love it if employers could provide guaranteed retirement income.

Furthermore, favoring predictability over personal responsibility, 58 percent of workers would rather receive a steady paycheck for life from their companies than invest 401k or other retirement savings themselves.

MetLife’s The Role of the Company study compiled data from over 1,000 interviews of U.S. workers who were at least 21 years old.

In line with other recent research, at least one thing seems certain: employees want employers to be more involved in helping them secure a successful retirement. More than six in 10 workers agreed that they would like companies to be more involved in the next five to 10 years, according to MetLife. Less than one in 10 say they want employers to be less involved.

“Employees recognize the important role their employers can play in planning for retirement,” Roberta Rafaloff, vice president of Institutional Income Annuities at MetLife, said in a statement. “They want a trusted partner who can help them navigate retirement security, creating an opportunity for companies to help their employees plan and save.”

Meanwhile, workers’ faith that the government will come to the rescue appears to be waning.

“If given a choice to direct their dollars, company-sponsored retirement accounts were vastly preferred by three to one compared to government solutions, as 74 percent said they would rather set aside part of their salary in a company-sponsored retirement account versus 26 percent who preferred paying into Social Security. Even when asked to choose between saving on their own or paying into Social Security, going it alone was preferable by 56 percent to 44 percent.”

While many wish they could pawn off responsibility on an outside party, most 401k savers acknowledge that the fate of their retirement depends on them. Fifty-four percent of respondents “say that individuals are primarily responsible for their own retirement security, versus 27 percent who say companies and 19 percent who say government.”

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