Retirement Plans and Prospects for Retirement Income Adequacy

Jack VanDerhei

Abstract — Will Americans have enough to live on in retirement? This paper attempts to address that question for the Baby Boomer and Gen Xer generations. While it is widely accepted that employment-based retirement plans have played a significant role in providing retirement income to American workers, this paper quantifies the impact that those programs have in the determination of retirement income adequacy. The analysis in this paper reveals that one of the most important factors in determining whether Gen Xers would have sufficient retirement resources is eligibility for participation in an employment-based defined contribution plan.