Here's What Any White House Retirement Plan Needs to Do
Details are sketchy about the new retirement plan that President Obama proposed in the State of the Union Address last night, so it's too early to offer any verdict. What causes concern, though, is that the Obama administration has previously floated retirement schemes that would double down on America's failed experiment with individual private accounts that are the cornerstone of the 401(k). Let's hope the administration now wants to head in a very different direction -- toward a universal system to supplement Social Security that mitigates risks and fees for individuals, and is built on pooled accounts managed by professionals.
Today most workers don't have a pension. A Social Security check often isn't enough on its own. And while the stock market has doubled over the last five years, that doesn't help folks who don't have 401(k)s. That's why tomorrow I will direct the Treasury to create a new way for working Americans to start their own retirement savings: MyRA. It's a -- it's a new savings bond that encourages folks to build a nest egg.
MyRA guarantees a decent return with no risk of losing what you put in. And if this Congress wants to help, work with me to fix an upside-down tax code that gives big tax breaks to help the wealthy save, but does little or nothing for middle-class Americans, offer every American access to an automatic IRA on the job, so they can save at work just like everybody in this chamber can.
a simple, safe and affordable “starter” retirement savings account available through employers to help millions of Americans save for retirement. This savings account would be offered through a familiar Roth IRA account and, like savings bonds, would be backed by the U.S. government.