Few view the blunt sequestration cuts set to begin on Friday as ideal policy, yet budget hawks worry that non-action on the deficit would leave in place a growing debt dynamic that has fostered only economic stagnation.

To that end, the Brookings Institution's Hamilton Project convened a roundtable discussion of budget experts Tuesday in Washington to consider "innovative, pragmatic proposals for lowering the deficit by reducing expenditures or raising revenues."

While the 15 proposals range from military procurement reform to restructuring Medicare, one of them at least drives to the heart of financial advisors' work with retirement clients. Proposal No. 6 by Brookings fellow Karen Dynan looks to save $40 billion over 10 years by limiting the subsidy of tax-advantaged retirement savings plans such as 401(k)s.

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