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As states move forward to create and implement retirement savings plans for private-sector workers, there are important considerations for consumers, employers, and taxpayers. Find the latest research and a breakdown by topic area here in this section. 


Financial Health for All Ages -Debra B. Whitman, PhD — May 2017

Liquid Savings of Working Households Ages 50–64 -Catherine Harvey and William Shiflett — May 2017

Access to Workplace Retirement Plans by Race and Ethnicity -Catherine Harvey — February 2017

Workplace Retirement Plans Will Help Workers Build Economic Security -David John and Gary Koenig — October 2014

Facts and Fallacy about State-Facilitated Retirement Savings Plans -David John and Angela M. Antonelli — February 2017


Fiscal Savings to States of Helping People Save More for Their Own Retirement -William Shiflett and Catherine Harvey

Enhancing Latino Retirement Readiness in California -Catherine S. Harvey — May 2015

The Business Case for 401(k) Automatic Enrollment -David C. John

The Case for Automatic Enrollment in Individual Retirement Accounts -Gary Koenig —  February 2012

The Population of Workers Covered by the Auto IRA: Trends and Characteristics -Benjamin H. Harris and Ilana Fischer — February 2012

Economic Effects of Automatic Enrollment in Individual Retirement Accounts -Benjamin H. Harris and Rachel M. Johnson        

Most Small Employers Face Low Costs to Implement Automatic IRAs (PDF) -Optimal Benefit Strategies, LLC for AARP — August 2009

AARP Arizona Voter Retirement Security Survey - January 2022

Michigan Voters Support Retirement Savings Option​​ -Lona Choi-Allum — August 2021

New York Small Business Owners Support Secure Choice Savings Program -Lona Choi-Allum — August 2021

A Look at Access to Employer-Based Retirement Plans in the States: Who's in, who's out -The Pew Charitable Trusts — January 2016

California Retirement Plan Could Serve as a National Model -Ross Eisenbrey and Monique Morrissey — September 13, 2012

Review of Potential Public Retirement Plan Options for Private Sector Employees/Employers in the State of VermontCenter for Retirement Initiatives, McCourt School of Public Policy, Georgetown University — January 2017

State Savings Initiatives: Lessons from California and Connecticut -Anek Belbase, Alicia H. Munnell, Nari Rhee and Geoffrey T. Sanzenbacher —  March 2016

Testimony before the Oregon Retirement Savings Task Force -David C. John — July 2014 

California Retirement Plan Could Serve as a National Model -Ross Eisenbrey and Monique Morrissey — September 2012


The Fiscal Implications of Inadequate Retirement Savings in Maine (PDF) -Philip Trostel, The University of Maine — February 2017

Enhancing Latino Retirement Readiness in California -Catherine S. Harvey — May 2015

Recommendations to Increase Retirement Savings in Colorado

Report On the Proceedings Of the Pennsylvania Treasury Department Private Sector Retirement Security Task Force

The Impact of Insufficient Retirement Savings on the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

Wyoming Report to the Committee on Labor, Health & Social Services

New Mexico Report of Senate Joint Memorial 12 Retirement Income Security Task Force

Retirement Readiness: Washington State Retirement Preparedness Study

Minnesota State-Administered Private Sector Employee Retirement Savings Study

Feasibility Study of Retirement Savings Programs for Virginia

The New York City Nest Egg Report

An Analysis of Options to Increase Retirement Security for New York City Private Sector Workers

1,000,000 of Our Neighbors at Risk: Improving Retirement Security for Marylanders

Report and Recommendations of the Oregon Retirement Savings Task Force

A Retirement Dashboard for the United States

David C. John, Grace Enda, William G. Gale, J. Mark Iwry, October 2020

Retirement Plan Trends and Participation

Employee Benefit Research Institute

Secure Choice 2.0: States Blazing a Path to Retirement Security for All

National Conference on Public Employee Retirement Systems — July 2017


Structuring a State-Sponsored Retirement Savings Plan

David C. John and William G. Gale — September 2015

Savings Arrangements Established by Qualified State Political Subdivisions for Non-Governmental Employees

U.S. Department of Labor — December 2016

Savings Arrangements Established by States for Non-Governmental Employees

U.S. Department of Labor — August 2016

Interpretive Bulletin Relating to State Savings Programs That Sponsor or Facilitate Plans Covered by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974

U.S. Department of Labor — November 2015

DOL Finalizes Regulation on State Automatic IRAs and Proposes Extension to Cities and Other Political Subdivisions

Groom Law Group — August 2016

The Importance of Auto Features in Promoting Retirement Savings

Brigitte C. Madrian, Harvard University and National Bureau of Economic Research — October 2014

The Impact of ERISA on State-Sponsored Retirement Plan Designs

Robert J. Toth Jr., Law Office of Robert J. Toth, Jr., LLC — October 2014

Five Tips for Successful Default Contribution Rates in Automatic Retirement Savings Plans

Peter Chandler and Gary Mottola, Retirement Made Simpler — October 2014

Employer Liability Under a State-Sponsored Retirement Program

Robert J. Toth Jr., Law Office of Robert J. Toth, Jr., LLC — October 2014

Investment Platform: The Advantages of Placing Retirement Savings Assets in Pooled Accounts

Karen Friedman and Norman Stein, Pension Rights Center — October 2014

Can We Increase Retirement Saving?

Steven A. Sass – September 2016

How States Are Working to Address the Retirement Savings Challenge

The Pew Charitable Trusts — June 2016

Federal Action Could Help State Efforts to Expand Private Sector Coverage (PDF)

GAO — September 2015

Retirement Security Federalism in Action

Elliot Schreur — April 2015

State Initiatives to Expand the Availability and Effectiveness of Private Sector Retirement Plans (PDF)

David E. Morse —  December 2014

State-Guaranteed Retirement Accounts: A Low-Cost, Secure Solution to America's Retirement Crisis

Teresa Ghilarducci, Robert Hiltonsmith, and Lauren Schmitz — September 2012

State-Sponsored Retirement Savings Plans: The Potential Effect on Women

Cindy Hounsell, Women's Institute for a Secure Retirement (WISER) — October 2014

Saving for Retirement: A Look at Small Business Owners (PDF)

Jules H. Lichtenstein — March 2010

Small Business Retirement Plan Availability and Worker Participation (PDF)

Kathryn Kobe for the U.S. Small Business Administration — March 2010

Securing Our Financial Future (PDF)

Bipartisan Policy Center Commission on Retirement Security and Personal Savings — 2016


Improving Americans’ Retirement Outcomes Through the National Savings Plan

David Madland, Alex Rowell, Rowland Davis — January 2016


A Comprehensive Plan to Confront the Retirement Savings Crisis (PDF)

Teresa Ghilarducci and Hamilton “Tony” James — 2015


American Retirement Savings Could Be Much Better (PDF)

Rowland Davis and David Madland — August 2013


Facing Up to the Retirement Savings Deficit: From 401(k)s to Universal and Automatic Accounts (PDF)

Michael Calabrese — October 2011


New Ways to Promote Retirement Saving

William G. Gale, David C. John, and Spencer Smith — November 2012

Time to Address the Retirement Savings Crisis

David C. John — October 2012


A Safe and Secure Retirement for All Americans: Pension Reform in the United States (PDF)

Teresa Ghilarducci and Monique Morrissey

Guaranteed Retirement Accounts: Toward Retirement Income Security

Teresa Ghilarducci — March 2008


Guaranteed Retirement Accounts: Toward Retirement Income Security

Teresa Ghilarducci — 2007