Steve Utkus

Steve Utkus

Steve Utkus oversees the Vanguard Center for Retirement Research, which studies many aspects of retirement in America—from how individuals start saving and investing in the early part of their careers, to how they prepare for actual retirement, to how they spend down their savings once they’re retired. Steve is particularly interested in behavioral finance—the study of how rational decision-making is influenced by human psychology. His current research interests also include the ways employers design retirement programs, and new developments in retirement in other countries. Steve holds a B.S. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and an M.B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School. He began working at Vanguard in 1987 and has served as director of the Center for Retirement Research since 2001. Steve is also a visiting scholar at the Wharton School.

Recent blog posts by Steve Utkus

Economy & markets

More on the fiscal outlook

My recent post on the government’s fiscal outlook generated several thoughtful comments.

Two readers mentioned Paul Krugman’s op-ed on Social Security in The New York Times. It is true, as Krugman points out, that Social Security is only a … Read more

Retirement

The fiscal outlook: Tough choices ahead

The long-term budget outlook for the federal government is bleak. What is surprising is that this is considered news.

The forces driving the U.S.’s long-term budget problem have been known for decades. We’ve also known for years that sometime in … Read more

Retirement

Retirement: Who’s ready, and who’s not?

Here’s the good news: Half of Americans are “on track” financially for retirement.

The bad news? The other half aren’t. … Read more

Retirement

Retirement savings success

Ask a Vanguard investor about what it takes to be successful at saving for retirement, and he or she would probably tell you to start saving early, save as much as you can, invest in a low-cost diversified portfolio, and … Read more

Retirement

The millionaire’s dilemma

What’s the typical income of a U.S. retiree? $40,000? $50,000? Higher, lower?

It’s $31,157 as of 2008.

That’s the median income of households age 65 and older as reported by Pat Purcell of the Congressional Research Service. The median means … Read more

Economy & markets

Thoughts on the Greek crisis

How can a financial crisis in a small European country have such a large effect on world markets? This is the question I recently received from an investor and a friend.… Read more

Retirement

Annuity—or not?

I recently attended a conference in Washington on the question of retirement income—how baby boomers will generate income from their 401(k) accounts once they retire.… Read more

Retirement

The new retirement

A new poll from Gallup says that Americans expect to depend more on Social Security when they retire—and less on 401(k)s, IRAs, and part-time work. I don’t believe it for a minute.… Read more

Personal finance

“Fin Lit” 101

What do inner-city families trying to save $500 for emergencies have in common with trust-fund heirs? Their common interest, it turns out, is financial literacy.… Read more

Retirement

401(k) ratings: Caveat lector

While I have been publishing research for many years, I consider myself new to the blogosphere. So I was a little surprised when my recent post on a new 401(k) rating service, Brightscope, elicited some response, including a critiqueRead more

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