“What a Sustained Low-yield Rate Environment Means for Retirement Income Adequacy: Results From the 2013 EBRI Retirement Security Projection Model,®” and “Use of Health Care Services and Access Issues by Type of Health Plan: Findings from the EBRI/MGA Consumer Engagement in Health Care Survey”

June 2013, Vol. 34, No. 6
Paperback, 24 pp.
PDF, 1,725 kb
Employee Benefit Research Institute, 2013

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Executive Summary

What a Sustained Low-yield Rate Environment Means for Retirement Income Adequacy: Results From the 2013 EBRI Retirement Security Projection Model,®



  • Overall, 25–27 percent of Baby Boomers and Gen Xers who would have had adequate retirement income under return assumptions based on historical averages are simulated to end up running short of money in retirement if today’s historically low interest rates are assumed to be a permanent condition, assuming retirement income/wealth covers 100 percent of simulated retirement expense.

  • A low-yield-rate environment may have an extremely large impact on retirement-income failure rates when viewed in isolation. However, the impact is muted somewhat when included as part of the entire retirement portfolio (e.g., Social Security benefits, possible defined benefit accruals, and net housing equity).

  • There appears to be a very limited impact of a low-yield-rate environment on retirement income adequacy for those in the lowest- (pre-retirement) income quartile, given the relatively small level of defined contribution and IRA assets and the relatively large contribution of Social Security benefits for this group. However, there is a very significant impact for the top three income quartiles.

Use of Health Care Services and Access Issues by Type of Health Plan: Findings from the EBRI/MGA Consumer Engagement in Health Care Survey



  • In 2012, 26–40 percent of respondents reported some type of access-to-health-care issue for either themselves or family members. Individuals in consumer-driven health plans (CDHPs) and high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) were more likely than individuals with traditional coverage to report access issues

  • Individuals in households with less than $50,000 in annual income were more likely than those in households with $50,000 or more in annual income to report access issues.

  • Very few differences in access issues were found by whether employers contributed to the account, but access issues were found by the level of contribution.

  • Length of time with the account had an impact on access issues, with 2012 being the first year where it was found that more years with the account were more likely to be associated with access issues.