2024 Symposium:

Retirement Saving, Investment, and Spending:
New Lessons from Behavioral Research

May 2-3, 2024

Jon M. Huntsman Hall, 3730 Walnut St, 8th Floor, Philadelphia, PA 19104

Our May 2-3, 2024, symposium at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania will explore and evaluate lessons from behavioral finance and economics regarding retirement saving, investment, spending, and institutional frameworks conducive to retirement security.  Our first panel highlights  the factors helping and hindering retirement saving behavior, including noncognitive factors as well as mortality beliefs. The second panel offers new lessons from retirement savers’ investment patterns, including gender differences, financial literacy, and retirement plan design. Consumption and spending patterns in retirement are the focus of the third panel, which will touch on cognitive decline and healthcare costs. In a final panel, speakers will discuss policies adopted by plan sponsors and governments applying insights from behavioral finance for retirement policy.

Our symposium is by invitation only and limited to members. Click here for more information about membership.

Conference Agenda

Please find the conference speakers’ bios here.

Thursday, May 2, 2024

Jon M. Huntsman Hall, 3730 Walnut Street, 8th Floor

8:00AM Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:50AM Welcome and Introductory Remarks: Olivia S. Mitchell, Pension Research Council of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania

9:00AM Session I: What Helps & Hinders Retirement Saving?
Moderator: Eugene Han, Capital Group

• Kim Peijnenburg and Gianpaolo Parise, EDHEC Business School: “Noncognitive Determinants of Retirement Saving Behavior”
• Rawley Z. Heimer, Arizona State University: “Subjective Beliefs, Saving, and Spending for Retirement”
Discussant: Abigail Hurwitz, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

10:15 – 10:30AM Break

Alycia Chin, SEC, Heidi Johnson, Financial Health Network, and Brianna Middlewood, Fidelity Investments: “Deepening our Understanding of Savings Automation in Retirement and Non-retirement Contexts”
• Shane Timmons, ESRI, and Féidhlim McGowan, University of Galway: “Does it All Add Up? New Experimental Evidence for ‘Undersum Bias’ as an Impediment to Precautionary Saving”
Discussant: Olivia S. Mitchell, The Wharton School

12:00PM Lunch: 350-351 Steinberg Hall-Dietrich Hall
3620 Locust Walk

Keynote: “Solving Problems of Saving and Aging, and of Investing and Spending”
Moderator: Richard Shea, Covington & Burling
Speaker: Peter Fisher, BlackRock

Jon M. Huntsman Hall, 3730 Walnut Street, 8th Floor

2:15PM Session II: Investment Behavior of Retirement Savers
Moderator: Sarah Holden, Investment Company Institute

• Michael Haliassos, Goethe University Frankfurt: “Wealth Accumulation: The Role of Others”
• Jonathan Reuter, Boston College: “Plan Design and Participant Behavior in Defined Contribution Retirement Plans: Past, Present, and Future”
Discussant: James Veneruso, SSGA

3:30PM – 3:45PM Break

• Vickie Bajtelsmit, Colorado State University: “The Implications of Gender Differences in Retirement Plan Investment Patterns”
• Gary Mottola, FINRA Investor Education Foundation; Lei Yu and Patricia Boyle, Rush University: “Aging in America: An Examination of Financial and Health Decision Making among Older Adults”
Discussant: John Scott, Pew Charitable Trusts

6:00PM Evening Dinner and Keynote: “The Importance of Financial Literacy: Evidence from Many Years of Data”
The Inn at Penn, 3600 Sansom Street, Woodlands Ballroom
Moderator: Nikolai Roussanov, The Wharton School
Speaker: Annamaria Lusardi, Stanford University

Friday, May 3, 2024

Jon M. Huntsman Hall, 3730 Walnut Street, 8th Floor

8:00AM Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:30AM Session III: Spending Challenges
Moderator: David Richardson, TIAA Institute

• Susann Rohwedder and Michael Hurd, RAND: “Insights on Economic Well-being at Older Ages from Analyses of Household Spending”
• Michaela Pagel, Washington University in St. Louis, and Arna Olafsson, Copenhagen Business School: “Patterns of Consumption and Savings around Retirement”
Discussant: David John, AARP

John Beshears, Harvard Business School; James Choi, Yale School of Management; Joel Dickson, Aaron Goodman, and Fiona Greig, Vanguard; and David Laibson, Harvard University: “Does 401(k) Loan Repayment Crowd Out Retirement Saving? Evidence from Administrative Data and Implications for Plan Design”
• Karen Kopecky, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, and R. Anton Braun, National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies: “Reforming the US Long-Term Care Insurance Market”
Discussant: Sudipto Banerjee, T. Rowe Price

10:45AM – 11:00AM Break

11:00AM Session IV: Panel: Insights from Behavioral Research for Retirement Policy and Practice
Moderator: Michael Orszag, WTW

• Will Sandbrook, NEST
• Francisco Gomes, London Business School
• Dan Goldstein, Microsoft Research

11:55AM Closing remarks: Olivia S. Mitchell, The Wharton School

Retirement Saving, Investment, and Spending:

New Lessons from Behavioral Research

Additional Resources:

PRC 2024 Newsletter

PRC Mission Statement

2024 Symposium List of Attendees

PRC Gift Form