Retirement plan participants don't always act in their best interest, and the ING Retirement Research Institute set out to find out why.

The plan provider interviewed people who participated or didn't participate in its plans to find out why they invested like they did or why they didn't sign up for the plan.

Many employees don't realize the value of having a 401(k) plan. They are young and they aren't thinking of the future, said Bob Kaplan, vice president, national training consultant for ING. He shared some of the company's findings on the mysteries of behavioral finance at this week's 2012 SPARK Forum in Palm Beach, Fla.

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