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Short Bits

MILLENNIALS REMAIN WARY.

Employees in their 20s have more target-date funds (TDFs) and other balanced types of mutual funds than older employees do. For many younger investors, the last recession was their introduction to investing. The Investment Company Institute (ICI) and the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) found that at the end of 2016, 64% of retirement plan participants in their 20s owned a TDF, while 45% of participants in their 60s had one. Younger investors have the most to gain by investing for growth and relying on time to smooth out market volatility.

PAY OR SAVE?

PlanSponsor’s NewsDash asked readers whether it is better to pay off debt or save for retirement first. Three quarters chose paying off debt and saving for retirement at the same time. Even if you need to pay off high-interest debt, consider at least matching your employer match to your company-sponsored retirement plan.

IN A FIX.

Americans are increasingly enamored of fixed indexed annuities as a way to provide some financial certainty in retirement. According to the LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute, this annuity type accounted for $17.6 billion in sales during the second quarter of 2018 – a record – and $32.1 billion for the first half of the year. Sales for all of 2018 are also projected to break a record.

LOOKING GOOD.

The good news continued for the business sector through the second quarter of 2018. The Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a revised 2.9% non-farm productivity rate for the second quarter of 2018, while unit labor costs decreased 1.0% in seasonally adjusted annual rates.

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