NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Publications by Colleen Flaherty Manchester

Contact and additional information for this authorAll NBER papers and publicationsNBER Working Papers only

Working Papers and Chapters

March 2013Retirement Plan Type and Employee Mobility: The Role of Selection and Incentive Effects
with Gopi Shah Goda, Damon Jones: w18902
Employer-provided pension plans may affect employee mobility both through an “incentive effect,” where the bundle of benefit characteristics such as vesting rules, pension wealth accrual, risk, and liquidity affect turnover directly, and a “selection effect,” where employees with different underlying mobility tendencies select across plans or across firms with different types of plans. In this paper, we quantify the role of selection by exploiting a natural experiment at a single employer in which an employee’s probability of transitioning from a defined benefit (DB) to a defined contribution (DC) pension plan was exogenously affected by default rules. Using regression discontinuity as well as differences-in-regression-discontinuities (DRD) methods, we find evidence that employees with hig...
March 2012What Will My Account Really Be Worth? An Experiment on Exponential Growth Bias and Retirement Saving
with Gopi Shah Goda, Aaron Sojourner: w17927
Recent findings on limited financial literacy and exponential growth bias suggest saving decisions may not be optimal because such decisions require an accurate understanding of how current contributions can translate into income in retirement. This study uses a large-scale field experiment to measure how a low-cost, direct-mail intervention designed to inform subjects about this relationship affects their saving behavior. Using administrative data prior to and following the intervention, we measure its effect on participation and the level of contributions in retirement saving accounts. Those sent income projections along with enrollment information were more likely to change contribution levels and increase annual contributions relative to the control group. Among those who made a change...
July 2010Incorporating Employee Heterogeneity into Default Rules for Retirement Plan Selection
with Gopi Shah Goda: w16099
We study the effect of incorporating heterogeneity into default rules by examining the choice between retirement plans at a firm which transitioned from a defined benefit (DB) to a defined contribution (DC) plan. The default plan for existing employees varied discontinuously depending on their age. Employing regression discontinuity techniques, we find that the default increased the probability of enrollment in the default plan by 60 percentage points. We develop a framework to solve for the optimal default rule analytically and numerically and find that considerable welfare gains are possible if defaults vary by observable characteristics.

Published: Gopi Shah Goda & Colleen Flaherty Manchester, 2013. "Incorporating Employee Heterogeneity into Default Rules for Retirement Plan Selection," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 48(1), pages 198-235. citation courtesy of

March 2007The Effect of Tuition Reimbursement on Turnover: A Case Study Analysis
w12975
Tuition reimbursement programs provide financial assistance for direct costs of education and are a type of general skills training program commonly offered by employers in the United States. Standard human capital theory argues that investment in firm-specific skills reduces turnover, while investment in general skills training could result in increased turnover. However, firms cite increased retention as a motivation for offering tuition reimbursement programs. This rationale for offering these programs challenges the predictions of the standard human capital model. This paper tests empirically whether participation in tuition reimbursement programs increases employee retention using data from a non-profit institution. To document the prevalence of tuition reimbursement programs, the cas...

Published: The Effect of Tuition Reimbursement on Turnover: A Case Study Analysis, Colleen Flaherty Manchester. in The Analysis of Firms and Employees: Quantitative and Qualitative Approaches, Bender, Lane, Shaw, Andersson, and von Wachter. 2008

Contact and additional information for this authorAll NBER papers and publicationsNBER Working Papers only

 
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