Closing the retirement gap

Your participants have a lot to look forward to. Help ensure a retirement income gap isn’t one of them.

Americans are living longer than ever. As a result, many will likely face a gap between the savings they put aside and the income they really want each year in retirement. Help participants close the gap with these short educational videos and resources, designed to help them grasp key investment concepts.

Pay your future self first

When it comes to taking action to save for your retirement, the more you focus on things you can control, the better.

  • The hardest part of saving for retirement may be not being sure you're doing the right thing.

    Wouldn’t it be great if your future self could travel back in time to give you advice?

    Here are five time-tested tips your future self might share.

    The first is to start saving as soon as you can.

    If you're not saving yet, start now!

    Getting an early start puts time on your side for your assets to grow - and gives you a chance to ride out the market's ups and downs.

    Once you get started, save as much as you can.

    It’s not easy to save when you’re just starting out, but try to at least max out your company match – that’s like giving your Future Self free money from your employer. 

    Tip number three – increase savings when you can.

    Your peak earning years should also be your peak savings years.

    Did you get a raise? Great – consider putting part of it in your retirement account.

    Fourth – Acting your age!

    It makes sense to take risk when you’re young. But as you get closer to retirement, think about more secure investments. You'll still want growth, but you may want to consider dialing down the risk to help preserve your hard earned savings.

    Finally, get serious about retirement planning sooner rather than later!

    Estimate your monthly retirement income needs and develop a plan to get there. Review your plan, use online spending and income tools, and talk to your advisor while there’s still time to enhance your efforts.

    And that’s it! Simple tips that could improve your retirement.

    Start today! Your future self will thank you.

LifePath® target date funds explained

A clear explanation of LifePath Target Date Funds and how they seek to provide participants with a diversified investment that balances between growing their investment and protecting against risk to help them advance toward their retirement goals.

  • There are some challenges in life you may be prepared to take on.
    And there are others where you’d rather trust a professional. 

    The same holds true when investing for retirement. 

    Some people enjoy the challenge of managing their own investments. 

    While others prefer to let professionals pilot their investment strategies. 

    If that’s you, there’s a professionally managed investment option which follows a sophisticated flight plan that adjusts for your time to retirement.

    Known as LifePath Target Date Funds, they seek to provide a diversified investment that balances between growing your investment and protecting against risk to help you advance toward your retirement goals.
    Similar to how a plane’s glide path adjusts as it approaches its destination, the investment allocation changes as you approach retirement. 

    When you’re young and far from retirement, the investment mix is more aggressive to help your investments grow.

    As you approach retirement, the fund automatically shifts to a more conservative investment allocation with the goal of preserving your savings.

    When you arrive at your desired retirement date, the fund shifts to an investment mix designed to help you retain spending power through retirement.
    So if you like the idea of gliding into retirement with the help of professionals managing your investments, LifePath Target Date Funds are available to help you on your journey.

    Visit your retirement plan website to learn more today.

How Target Date Funds Simplify Investing

An explanation of how target date funds can take the stress out of investing so that you can focus on saving for retirement.

  • Your life is full of twists and turns as you travel through different seasons toward retirement.

    Picking the right investments to get you through the decades of change can seem intimidating.

    Fortunately, target date funds can take the stress out of investing by automatically adjusting your investments on your journey to retirement.

    Let’s say you want to retire in 2039 when you turn 65.

    All you have to do is pick the fund closest to your retirement year.

    In this case, you might consider the 2040 fund – the fund closest to your target date.

    A team of professionals manages the fund and invests in a globally diversified mix of stocks, bonds, and other investments.

    They adjust the mix of stocks and bonds as you go through your career to help you stay on track.

    By simplifying the process of investing, target date funds allow you to focus on saving...so you can focus on the road to retirement and beyond. 

    Visit your retirement plan website to learn more today.

Diversification within Target Date Funds

A clear explanation on the concept of diversification and why you only need one target date fund

  • Some days the stock market goes up. Some days it goes down.

    Forecasting whether the market will go up or down on any one day is hard, even for professional investors. The good news is – you don’t have to, thanks to something called diversification.

    When you take a closer look at the market, you’ll see that almost every day, some stocks go up while others go down.

    What’s more, bonds tend to keep to their own current and may be strong when the stock market is weak.

    Diversification tries to blend together different currents to give you a smoother journey. It does this by investing across a broad number of stocks and multiple asset classes.

    That’s exactly what BlackRock® LifePath® target date funds do as they help you invest for retirement.

    You simply pick the target date fund closest to the year you plan to retire and the fund automatically does the rest.

    It’s diversified based on how close you are to retirement. When retirement is off in the distance, more stocks can help power your journey. As you get closer to retirement, the mix moves toward bonds, seeking to reduce risk.

    Remember, each fund is diversified based on how close you are to retirement, so you only need one target date fund.

    If you combine funds, it may no longer be the right fit for your target date – and it doesn’t necessarily improve your overall diversification.

    No matter where you are in your retirement savings journey, target date funds can help you invest confidently in your future.

    Visit your retirement plan website to learn more today.

Retirement spending: Putting a plan in action

As the transition into retirement nears, consider how to spend your savings in retirement, while making it last. BlackRock’s LifePath Spending Tool can help you understand your estimated spending potential year-over-year in retirement.

  • Saving can be hard. And retirement is getting closer. It might be time to think about whether you’ve saved enough money for retirement, and how to make your money last.

    A helpful starting point for a retirement plan takes into account your goals and the lifestyle you want when you retire. Think about whether you intend to spend more or less than you make now.

    Consider all your potential future sources of income, including social security savings and other income you plan to receive.

    Ask yourself if this combination of income is enough. Think about whether you’ll need to work longer, or generate additional income now, so that you’ll have adequate savings for retirement.

    You’ll also want to have a plan in place if and when the markets become volatile.

    As the transition into retirement nears, it’s helpful to think about how you can responsibly spend your savings in retirement, while making it last.

    One of the most difficult choices you may have to make in retirement is how to take income from your savings while leaving, and even growing, assets you may need in the future.

    Thankfully, you don’t have to do it alone; there are resources that can help!

    BlackRock’s LifePath Spending Tool can help you understand your estimated spending potential year-over-year in retirement.

    It uses your age, savings, and portfolio allocation-- and gives you the option to add social security income-- to estimate your year-over-year spending potential.

    These projections can help inform your spending decisions throughout retirement.

    Taking the time to plan today...can help you enjoy a one-of-a-kind retirement tomorrow.

    Visit your retirement plan website to learn more today.