Eric Stevenson, President of Nationwide Retirement Solutions, testified before the Senate HELP (Health Education Labor and Pensions) Committee on Feb. 28 to highlight challenges faced by American retirement savers. He encouraged lawmakers to help more Americans take advantage of the next generation of retirement savings vehicles: Protected Retirement solutions, which replicate the income security of defined benefit plans within one of the most accessible savings vehicles available to workers today, their qualified defined contribution retirement plan. Stevenson argued that Protected Retirement solutions will be the hallmark of a new era for American retirement savers.
Eric Stevenson testified befor the Senate HELP Committee

View a replay of the committee meeting
View Stevenson’s written testimony

In a year when more Americans will turn 65 than any point in history, Stevenson highlighted how many of today’s retirees are facing retirement without guaranteed lifetime income or a game plan for decumulating the savings they built over the course of their careers. In fact, a new Nationwide Retirement Institute® survey1 found one-third of current retirees aged 60–65 are considering returning to work, with half (50%) citing the fear of running out of money or currently running out of money as their top reason for doing so. 

He applauded many of the advances made possible by the SECURE Act of 2019 and SECURE 2.0 Act of 2022, highlighting how these policy changes are making it easier for employers to integrate Protected Retirement solutions into their plans. Workers with access to these solutions can choose to invest in them, knowing what their guaranteed income will be upon retirement.

He also encouraged more employers to take advantage of opportunities created by SECURE Act legislation by offering Protected Retirement solutions, implementing student loan matching and offering emergency savings provisions for their employees. Stevenson’s testimony included support for several pieces of pending bipartisan legislation that will support a more secure retirement for American workers, including:

  • The Helping Young Americans Save for Retirement Act, which would require employer-sponsored plans to allow 18– to 21-year-old employees to participate
  • The Auto Re-enroll Act of 2023, which would further enhance enrollment in retirement plans
  • The Retirement Fairness for Charities and Educational Institutions Act of 2023, which would permit 403(b)(7) custodial accounts to invest in collective investment trusts
  • The Lifetime Income for Employees Act (LIFE Act), which expands the ability for annuitized products to be offered as qualified default investment alternatives (QDIAs) within employer plans  
  • The Credit for Caring Act, which would provide caregivers with a tax credit that offsets some of the cost of providing care  
  • The Expanding Access to Retirement Savings for Caregivers Act, which would enable catchup contributions to caregivers before age 50, providing one year of additional catchup contributions for each year the caregiver was out of employment due to their role 
[1] Peak Retirement Survey (1/2024)
Guarantees are subject to the claims-paying ability of the issuing insurance company.

Provisions of these options may vary based on plan selection and/or by state regulation. These investment options may not be available in all states.