This page lists recent studies and relevant statistical data on pension coverage and related issues that have been published by other organizations. Please click the title to read each study. You may need to download Adobe Acrobat Reader to view these studies.
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Pension Coverage Statistics
General Pension Statistics
General Wealth and Savings Statistics
Comparisons of Defined Benefit and Defined Contribution Plans
Analysis of Defined Benefit Plans
Trends in Defined Benefit Plans
Analysis of Defined Contribution Plans
Retirement Savings: How Much Will Workers Have When They Retire? by Patrick Purcell, Congressional Research Service, January 2007
This report presents the results of an analysis of the amount of retirement savings that households might be able to accumulate by age 65 under a number of different scenarios. The analysis shows how varying the age at which households begin to save for retirement, the percentage of their earnings that they save, and the rate of return on investment can affect the amount of retirement savings the household will accumulate.
Pension Sponsorship and Participation: Summary of Recent Trends by Patrick Purcell, Congressional Research Service, August 2006.
This study incorporates data from the Census Bureau's March 2006 Current Population Survey and found that the percentage of workers whose employer sponsored a retirement plan fell from 61.8% in 2004 to 59.7% in 2005. This study also contains a wealth of statistics on rates of retirement plan participation among employees from various sectors.
Estimating Pension Coverage Using Different Data Sets by Geoffrey Sanzenbacher, Boston College Center for Retirement Research, August 2006.
This study examined pension coverage among several groups of people and found that only about half of the private sector workforce has pension coverage. The study also found that while the type of coverage has shifted rapidly in recent decades from defined benefit plans to 401(k) plans, overall coverage has remained flat.
Access to Defined Contribution Retirement Plans among Workers in Private Industry, 2005 by Elizabeth Dietz, Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2006.
This study finds that 53 percent of all workers in private industry have access to at least one employer-provided defined contribution retirement plan.
Individual Account Retirement Plans: An Analysis of the 2004 Survey of Consumer Finances by Craig Copeland, Employee Benefits Research Institute, May 2006.
This EBRI Issue Brief
examines the incidence of individual account plans among families, as well as the
average amount of assets accumulated in these accounts, using the most recent data from the Federal
Reserve’s Survey of Consumer Finances.
Topics in Aging: Income of Americans Age 65 and Older, 1969-2004 by Patrick Purcell and Debra Whitman, Congressional Research Service, March 2006.
This CRS report presents data collected by the Census Bureau from 1969 through 2005 that describe how the demographic traits, employment patterns, and the sources and amounts of income of people 65 and older have changed over a period of nearly 40 years.
Pension Coverage: A Missing Step in the Wealth-Building Ladder for Latinos by Eric Rodriguez and Deirdre Martinez, National Council of La Raza, March 2004.
This study examines pension coverage rates for Latinos and provides insight into methods of improving pension access and participation among Latino workers.
Retirement Savings and Household Wealth: Trends from 2001 to 2004 by Patrick Purcell, Congressional Research Service, May 2006.
This study analyzes trends in retirement savings, retirement plan design and plan participation.
Private Pension Plan Bulletin: Abstract of 2001 Form 5500 Annual Reports,
This report, published annually, provides basic statistical data on the types of retirement plans offered, how many people participated in each type of plan, and the amount of assets in each type.
Why are Healthy Employers Freezing Their Pensions? Boston College Center for Retirement Research, March 2006.
This is an analysis of several case studies of 17 healthy companies that recently announced they were freezing their defined contribution pension plans.
An Analysis of Frozen Defined Benefit Plans,
This study provides an analysis of 2003 data.
Recent Funding and Sponsorship Trends Among the FORTUNE 1000,
Future Retirement Income Security Needs Defined Benefit Pensions by
This study analyzes the importance of defined benefit plans and provides evidence that the defined benefit plan is an important benefit for companies to provide to employees.
A Balanced Look at the Case for Defined Benefit Pensions,
Private Pensions: Information on Cash Balance Pension Plans,
This study provides an analysis of the effects of converting from a traditional pension plan to a cash balance plan.
401(k) Plans are Still Coming Up Short This study analyzes the role 401(k) plans play in the provision of retirement income.
Retirement Plan Participation and Contributions: Trends from 1998 to 2003,
Defined Benefit and Defined Contribution Plans: A History, Market Overview and Comparative Analysis by
This is a basic primer on the differences between defined benefit and defined contribution pension plans.
List of Advantages and Disadvantages for DB and DC Plans by
Lists the advantages and disadvantages of defined benefit and defined contribution plans.