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'Retirement Heist' Overlooked Causes of the Retirement Crisis

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Uploaded on Nov 8, 2011

The decline in employer-sponsored pension and retiree health plans is a troubling trend that has eroded the retirement security of millions of Americans. Stock market losses and low interest rates have weakened pension funding, and employers say that this -- combined with retiree longevity, rising costs and the need to compete globally -- is forcing them to freeze pensions and cut retiree benefits.

However, Ellen Schultz, a former investigative reporter for The Wall Street Journal, says that employers' practices also played a role. In her new book, Retirement Heist, Schultz contends that large companies, aided by benefits consultants and lawyers, have played a largely overlooked role in the decline of American pensions and benefits. At this November 2011 event, Schultz and other experts explored the numerous examples of companies using their pension funds and retiree benefit cuts to bolster profits and boost compensation for senior executives at the expense of rank-and-file workers.

This event was hosted jointly by the New America Foundation, the Pension Rights Center and AARP.

In this video David Certner talks with author Ellen Schultz about her new book. They are accompanied by Phyllis Borzi, Donald Fuerst, Karen Ferguson and Michael Calabrese

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