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Retirement Savings Policy by Michael P. Barry

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Chapter 7 The Cash Balance Plan Conversion Crisis

In the late 1990s and early 2000s, several old economy technology companies decided that their traditional DB plans were not serving the corporate mission.

They saw themselves in competition with (and to some extent losing to) firms in places like Silicon Valley, where workforce incentives were built around stock options, bonuses and 401(k) plans. Frankly, most workers at these new economy firms weren’t thinking about retirement at all.

Certainly, retirement policy wasn’t the only or even the most significant challenge these old economy firms faced. But it was one of them: corporate retirement benefits policy was a major part of compensation policy and of a corporate culture that top management ...

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