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View Poll Results: My Corporation Provides Me with...
Pension Plan Only 3 4.11%
Matching 401k (or similar) Only 38 52.05%
Both Pension and Matching 401k 32 43.84%
Voters: 73. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 05-10-2008, 06:11 PM   #21
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oops I have to edit above I'm 44
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Old 05-11-2008, 06:04 PM   #22
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Im too old for the poll, but we have both DB and 401k w/match which I am generally pleased with. Since 2001, new hires only get 401k with automatic deposit of 4% and 4% match (i.e. if you put in 0 you get 4%, but if you put in 4% company puts in 4% plus 4% match)

I just think 401k-only pensions will be a HUGE disaster for our kids. 401ks are fantastic as a supplement to some type of annuity. Maybe SS will pick up the slack, but 401ks were not meant to be a primary form of retirement savings which is happening now. Apart from this board, the general public (especially 20-somethings) will not be have the skill and discipline to build adequate savings unless some minimum stable-value type allocation is mandated (as described above) or possibly using a target date strategy. I really like the FERS type plan with a 401k-type component, a DB annuity component, and SS. Add some personal savings and you have a four legged stool.
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Old 05-11-2008, 06:27 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by jazz4cash View Post
Im too old for the poll, but we have both DB and 401k w/match which I am generally pleased with. Since 2001, new hires only get 401k with automatic deposit of 4% and 4% match (i.e. if you put in 0 you get 4%, but if you put in 4% company puts in 4% plus 4% match)

I just think 401k-only pensions will be a HUGE disaster for our kids. 401ks are fantastic as a supplement to some type of annuity. Maybe SS will pick up the slack, but 401ks were not meant to be a primary form of retirement savings which is happening now. Apart from this board, the general public (especially 20-somethings) will not be have the skill and discipline to build adequate savings unless some minimum stable-value type allocation is mandated (as described above) or possibly using a target date strategy. I really like the FERS type plan with a 401k-type component, a DB annuity component, and SS. Add some personal savings and you have a four legged stool.
I personally wish my DB plans could be converted to a cash equivalent. I'd much rather have a big pile of cash in my 401k than some insurance product.
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Old 05-11-2008, 06:38 PM   #24
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I personally wish my DB plans could be converted to a cash equivalent. I'd much rather have a big pile of cash in my 401k than some insurance product.
Same here, I would have RE'd 2 years ago if I had that option.

For the record, my company still has a pension plan, 401(k) with 0.5% match on first 6% and retiree health benefits. In the process of being bought out and the expectation is that these will soon be stopped. I only hope us oldies (over 50) get grand-fathered in.
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Old 05-20-2008, 10:25 AM   #25
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I was just reading an article on CNNmoney:

West Virginia teachers vote on pensions versus 401(k)s - May. 20, 2008

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The proportion of private sector workers who participate in a traditional pension plan has dwindled from almost 40% at the beginning of 1980 to only about 17% now.
On this poll alone we have had almost half the people respond that they have a pensions. I find it amusing scary that the people who are probably best off in terms of potential for comfortable retirement are the ones here on this board sharing startegies and goals, while the ones most at risk of coming up short seem to be oblivious to the vast resources of this forum, nevermind the rest of the internet.
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Old 05-20-2008, 10:29 AM   #26
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On this poll alone we have had almost half the people respond that they have a pensions. I find it amusing scary that the people who are probably best off in terms of potential for comfortable retirement are the ones here on this board sharing startegies and goals, while the ones most at risk of coming up short seem to be oblivious to the vast resources of this forum, nevermind the rest of the internet.
Well, for one thing I suspect this forum is skewed a little toward older workers (i.e. 40s and 50s). These are more likely to have a pension than those in their 20s and 30s. Maybe some of them are voting even when it was intended to be for folks under 40?

We also seem to have a high ratio of government employees and military folks.
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Old 05-20-2008, 10:41 AM   #27
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I'm 30.

401(k) only. Current employer is 100% match to 6% plus another gift in March based on being at the company for the entire year previous.. Gift is based on planned versus actual benefits spending. That gift has run 1.5% the last three years. (probably longer, but I wasn't eligible my first year here, started in May).

I've been here just over 4 years now (gosh, 9 days ago... that's pushing it for me). I've put in $50k so far. The company has put in $30k.
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Old 05-20-2008, 11:41 AM   #28
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I personally wish my DB plans could be converted to a cash equivalent. I'd much rather have a big pile of cash in my 401k than some insurance product.
Can't you roll the lump sum of the pension over to an IRA when you leave the company?

btw - Nebraska forced people hired after 2002 into a Cash Balance pension plan b/c employees didn't fair well in the DC plan Nebraska sees red over its 401(k) plans.
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Old 05-20-2008, 11:46 AM   #29
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Can't you roll the lump sum of the pension over to an IRA when you leave the company?
I suspect you could if you were offered a lump sum buyout on the pension. (And I believe you would have to roll it over to avoid penalties if you were under age 59.5, but I could be wrong.)

I suspect mine will be bought out. I have a small pension coming to me from a previous employer. I doubt the present cash value is even $20,000 -- it's something like $260 a month at 55 or $630 a month at 65. I have a feeling they may want to just cash me out of it when I turn 54 (a year before becoming eligible to collect). There's no point in them offering now when I could still croak and get nothing before turning 55.
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Old 05-20-2008, 05:21 PM   #30
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I suspect you could if you were offered a lump sum buyout on the pension. (And I believe you would have to roll it over to avoid penalties if you were under age 59.5, but I could be wrong.)
Each person would have to check out their own plan's Summary Plan Description (SPD), but in most corporate pension plans you're able to roll the lump sum over to an IRA when you terminate service. I think you're correct that any lump sum distribution from a pension plan that is not rolled into an IRA would be subject to income taxes and possibly the 10% penalty if done before 59.5. Though there may be special plan rules if you terminate after age 55.

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I suspect mine will be bought out. I have a small pension coming to me from a previous employer. I doubt the present cash value is even $20,000 -- it's something like $260 a month at 55 or $630 a month at 65. I have a feeling they may want to just cash me out of it when I turn 54 (a year before becoming eligible to collect). There's no point in them offering now when I could still croak and get nothing before turning 55.
Again, check the SPD. Most corporate pension plans can only automatically "cash you out" [read: send you a check] if your lump sum is below $5,000 or so. Otherwise, you have to voluntarily take the lump sum. Though, there may be special rules spelled out in the SPD if the entire plan is terminated.

- Alec
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Old 05-20-2008, 07:31 PM   #31
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Again, check the SPD. Most corporate pension plans can only automatically "cash you out" [read: send you a check] if your lump sum is below $5,000 or so. Otherwise, you have to voluntarily take the lump sum. Though, there may be special rules spelled out in the SPD if the entire plan is terminated.

- Alec
I tried to cash out but if their calcs said the cash value was over $5K you got the annuitized amount. I agree with your conclusions.
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Old 05-21-2008, 12:36 PM   #32
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I'm 39, but I am a govvie, so I have both a pension and a 401(k) - the TSP.
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