Do You Want Your Money All at Once or Bit by Bit Forever? New York Times (03/18/03) p.11; Mencimer, Stephanie
There is a growing trend among pension plans of offering workers a choice between traditional annuities or lump-sum payouts that represent an estimate of the annuity's value. But, making the decision can be complicated and many workers are not prepared to make it. About half the Fortune 100 companies offer the traditional pension with just the lifetime monthly payments option, a reduction since 1995 when almost all did, and of the remainder some 30 percent offer defined-benefit plans that give employees a choice. Experts say that most employees will choose the lump sum if they can, in part because of misunderstandings about annuities and impressions that they will lose their investments if they die early.