President Donald Trump is prepared to sign an executive order in coming days with the goal of providing Americans more control over their retirement savings.
According to Politico, the expected policy announcement will have two stated goals.
First, the president will ask federal regulators to determine whether the current age limit for maintaining funds in tax-deferred retirement accounts should be raised from the current cutoff age of 70 and a half.
“The EO asks Treasury to consider whether they need to be updated,” said Counselor to the Treasury Secretary Daniel Kowalksi.
A second focus of the order is expected to include a call on agencies to loosen restrictions limiting the ability of disparate small businesses to join together to offer 401k accounts for their respective employees.
As the rules are currently written, such companies must have a common business interest to form a pool account.
Trump’s special assistant for domestic policy explained the goal behind the executive order set to be signed during the president’s upcoming trip to North Carolina.
“The executive order is going to direct the Departments of Labor and Treasury to issue regulations that make it easier for small businesses to join together to form association or retirement plans or AARP that are also known as multiple employer plans,” James Sherk said.
He said the goal is to offer more options to Americans working for small businesses while lowering the associated costs of maintaining retirement accounts.
After it is signed, the executive order will likely take between six months and one year to be fully enforced.
The assistant secretary of the Labor Department’s Employee Benefits Security Administration said that Trump will take a comprehensive approach to making retirement accounts more attractive to the nation’s small businesses.
“We know that most workers at larger employers have access to retirement savings plans like a 401k plan and we know that many if not most workers at small businesses do not,” said Preston Rutledge. “So we will explore ways to tackle those challenges.”
Specifically, he cited a reduction in costs and regulatory red tape as the goals of Trump’s forthcoming action.
“Basically we will be trying to find policy ideas that will help make joining a 401k plan a more attractive proposition for small employers to the ultimate benefit of their employees,” he said.
Though Sherk opined that it makes sense for the president to sign the order in North Carolina, he said the location has nothing to do with the contents of the document.
“I mean you know he campaigned on draining the swamp and this is a significant action that is going to make life easier for American workers and promote the dignity of work, and it seems more fitting and appropriate to do that in real America than here in the Beltway surrounded by the swamp,” he said.
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