Report : DC Retirement | April 05, 2023

Generational changes in 401(k) behaviors

Read time: 18 minutes

Baby boomers were the first generation with access to defined contribution (DC) retirement plans throughout a meaningful part of their careers. Millennials were the first generation to have access to automatic enrollment and automatic investment solutions in DC plans during their early working years.
This paper highlights some of the generational differences we have observed in our recordkeeping data over a 15-year period as a result of automatic solutions. We answer the question: How have generational patterns of saving and investing changed in DC plans? One finding: The overall participation rate of employees in our study increased from 62% in 2006 to 82% in 2021, largely because more plans have adopted automatic enrollment.