Report Calls on Congress to “Comprehensively Examine” the U.S. Retirement System – Including Workplace Plans

The U.S. retirement system, and the workers and retirees it was designed to help, face major challenges. Traditional pensions have become much less common, and individuals are increasingly responsible for planning and managing their own retirement savings accounts, such as 401(k) plans. Yet research shows that many households are ill-equipped for this task and have little or no retirement savings.

In the report, the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) provides that the goals should be to:

  • Encourage universal access to retirement savings
  • Ensure income adequacy in retirement savings
  • Improve choices for the spend-down phase of retirement
  • Reduce risk and complexity
  • Stabilize financial exposure to the federal government

In this special report, GAO examines these challenges, drawing from prior work and others’ research, as well as insights from a panel of retirement experts on how to better ensure a secure and adequate retirement.