An historical analysis and comparison of the military retirement system and the federal employee retirement system
Breth, Bruce R.
Doyle, Richard B.
Barrett, Frank J.
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The most significant change to private sector as well as civil service employee retirement systems over the past 15 years has been the transition from defined benefit to defined contribution retirement plans. This trend has shifted a significant portion of the risk involved in funding retirement from corporations and the federal government to employees. This thesis examines the military retirement system and the Civil Service Retirement System/Federal Employee Retirement System, from their introduction to present day, addressing the reasons for major changes during their evolution. Government studies, private studies, periodicals and Internet resources were consulted to identify significant developments and legislation affecting the military retirement system and Federal Employee Retirement System (FERS). While the retirement system for federal employees has transitioned from a strict defined benefit system to a system with a defined contribution element, the military retirement system has not yet incorporated a defined contribution component. The trend of persistent legislative attention towards the military retirement system implies that the 1980 and 1986 reductions didn't cut deep enough and future reductions are possible. The success of FERS suggests that the application of a defined contribution element to the current military retirement system is very likely in the future
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