How Has Shift to Defined Contribution Plans Affected Saving?

Source: Alicia H. Munnell, Jean-Pierre Aubry and Caroline V. Crawford, Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, IB#15-16, September 2015

The brief’s key findings are:
Many believe that people are saving less for retirement due to the shift from defined benefit (DB) to defined contribution (DC) plans.
The analysis uses National Income and Product Accounts data, with adjustments, to compare DB benefit accruals with DC contributions from 1984-2012.
The results show that the percentage of total salaries going to retirement saving has declined slightly during this period.
But if returns on asset accumulations are included, the annual change in pension wealth is relatively steady, so the shift to DC plans has not led to less total saving.
What has changed is that individuals, rather than plan sponsors, now bear all of the risk.