2011 Symposium: Reshaping Retirement Security: Lessons from the Global Financial Crisis

May 5-6, 2011

About the Conference

The global financial crisis has prompted policymakers, plan sponsors, benefits specialists, academics, and actuaries to rethink retirement security for the 21st century. Our 2011 Pension Research Council conference at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania explored the impact of the crisis and its fallout on retirement systems, as well as ideas for new, more resilient models in the United States and abroad. Discussion covered how the crisis has shaped retirement patterns and future retirement income flows, capital market opportunities, plan sponsor decisions, and regulator reactions to the crisis. This event provoked energetic discussion on what the crisis implies for retirement security, the pension marketplace, and the future of retirement system regulation.

This conference was co-hosted by Raimond Maurer, Mark Warshawsky, and Olivia S. Mitchell at The Wharton School.

Conference Agenda

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Session I: Rethinking Retirement in the New Economic Era

  • “Changing Retirement Behavior in the Wake of the Financial Crisis”
    Julia Coronado, BNP Paribas and Karen Dynan, The Brookings Institution
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  • “The Potential Impact of the Great Recession on Future Retirement Incomes”
    Barbara Butrica, Richard Johnson, and Karen Smith, Urban Institute
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Discussant: David Richardson, TIAA-CREF Institute
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  • “The Effects of the Economic Crisis on the Older Population: How Expectations, Consumption, Bequests and Retirement by the Older Population Responded to Market Shocks”
    Michael Hurd and Susann Rohwedder, RAND Corporation
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  • “Retirement Behavior and the Global Financial Crisis”
    Jason J. Fichtner, George Mason University, John W.R. Phillips, National Institute of Health, and Barbara A. Smith, Social Security Administration
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Discussant: Peter Fisher, Consultant
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Keynote Speaker: Chuck Blahous, Hoover Institution

Session II: How Did Defined Benefit Plans Handle the Financial Crisis?

  • “Corporate Defined Benefit Pension Plans and the 2008-2009 Financial Crisis: Impact and Sponsor and Government Reactions”
    Mark J. Warshawsky, TowersWatson
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  • “Multiemployer Pension Plans Respond to the Financial Crisis”
    Judith F. Mazo and Eli Greenblum, The Segal Company
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  • “Adopting Hybrid Pension Plans: Effects of Economic Crisis and Regulatory Reform”
    Robert Clark, North Carolina State University, Alan Glickstein and Tomeka Hill, TowersWatson
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Discussant: David John, Retirement Made Simpler

  • “Collective Pensions and the Global Financial Crisis: The Case of the Netherlands”
    Lans Bovenberg and Theo Nijman, Tilburg University
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  • “How Have Public Sector Pensions Responded to the Financial Crisis?”
    Andrew G. Biggs, American Enterprise Institute
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Discussant: William Clark, Federal Reserve Employee Benefit System
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Keynote Speaker: Henry T.C. Hu, University of Texas Law School, “The Crisis, Retirement Security, and Government”

Friday, May 6, 2011

Session III: Rethinking the Resilience of Defined Contribution Plans

  • “The Private Employer Defined Contribution System Passes its Stress Test”
    David Wray, The Profit Sharing/401k Council of America
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  • “Trading in 401(k) Plans During the Financial Crisis”
    Ning Tang, San Diego State University, Olivia S. Mitchell, The Wharton School, and Stephen P. Utkus, The Vanguard Group
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  • “Lifecycle Impacts of the Financial Crisis on Optimal Consumption-Portfolio Choices and Labor Supply”
    Jingjing Chai, Raimond Maurer, and Ralph Rogalla, Goethe University
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Discussant: Peter Brady, Investment Company Institute
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Session IV: Roundtable

Sandy Mackenzie, AARP
Dana Bilyeum, Nevada PERS
Thomas C. Deas, Jr.
FMC Corporation

Closing remarks by Olivia S. Mitchell, The Wharton School

For More Information

For more information, please contact:

Pension Research Council
The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania
3000 Steinberg Hall – Dietrich Hall
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6302
Tel: 215.898.7620
Fax: 215.573-3418
Email: prc@wharton.upenn.edu