NJ Companies Have Slowed Contribution to Retirement Plans

September 30, 2009 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - A survey by O'Meara Financial Group finds New Jersey's economy has affected retirement plan participation rates and contributions from employers and employees.

An announcement said 14% of the New Jersey employers surveyed have experienced an increase in retirement plan participation, while 35% have seen a decrease. More than a third (35%) of respondents said they have added automatic enrollment to their plans.

One-fifth (20%) have lowered employer contributions in the last year.

Nearly a third (30%) of plans in the survey that offer loans saw an increase in the amount of loans taken by participants in 2009.

Eighty percent of respondents said plan vendors have communicated plan fees to them, and 73% understand the fees that they are being charged by the plan. Almost two-thirds (63%) of NJ companies indicated they review their plans annually or less frequent than annually, while 27% review more often.

Thirty percent of respondents said they will be making changes to their retirement plans in the next year, with the biggest changes in investment monitoring and plan design and set up.

Four-in-ten sponsors in the survey use a financial adviser to help educate employees, while 33% do not provide any help in educating employees regarding their 401(k) plans.

Survey respondents included companies that range from 20 employees up to over 1,000 employees, and with assets from approximately $1 million up to $25 million.