The 401-K Retirement Gamble



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“The 401(k) … is one of the only products that Americans buy that they don’t know the price of it. It’s also one of the products that Americans buy that they don’t even know its quality or know how to judge its quality. It’s one of the products that Americans buy that they don’t know its danger.”

Teresa Ghilarducci is director of the Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis at The New School for Social Research. The 401(k) system has been a “failed experiment” for middle-class Americans because it was never designed with them in mind, she told FRONTLINE. “It’s not the fault of people that they don’t have enough savings in their individual retirement account or their 401(k)s,” she said. “It’s the fault of the system, and the whole system needs to be reformed.” This is the edited transcript of an interview conducted Oct. 25, 2012.

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Teresa Ghilarducci: Why the 401(k) is a “Failed Experiment”

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