Employer-sponsored pre-retirement seminars help increase financial literacy for participants, especially for those with relatively little knowledge, according to a study.

A National Bureau of Economic Research working paper, Golden Years or Financial Fears? Decision Making After Retirement Seminars, found American workers had a better understanding of retirement income needs and total expected retirement wealth.

Before and after the seminars, attendees filled out a survey with financial knowledge and literacy questions.

Prior to attending the seminar, 39.3% of respondents said they expect to work after retirement. Following the seminar, 49.4% of those surveyed said they plan to work after they retire.

Some attendees also changed their mind regarding annuities. Before the seminar, 55.7% hadn’t made a decision regarding the annuitization of their DC plan balance. After the seminar, that number dropped to 45.4%.

Also, 31.1% of participants changed their planned retirement age following the seminar.

The post-seminar results also showed the following:

  • 95% said the programs provided all or most of the information needed for them to make important retirement decisions;
  • 87% believe they will be able to make better retirement choices; and
  • 72% said they were more aware of the benefits provided by their employers.

The results are based on responses from 1,182 employees of more than 1,500 seminar attendees. The workers are employed at five large U.S. companies.

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Copyright © 2019 Transcontinental Media G.P. Originally published on benefitscanada.com

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