The Pension Research Council
Working Paper

A Stress Test for the Private Employer Defined Contribution System

David Wray
WP2011-13

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Abstract — This chapter explores how the US private employer-sponsored defined contribution system fared during the financial market implosion followed by a prolonged macro-economic downturn. While data are still preliminary, we conclude that many plans did well, resulting in little change in employer sponsorship and employee participation. Moreover, account balances and contributions have recovered, boding well for the future.