Automatic enrollment IRAs are an idea that won't go away.

Most recently, they were featured in the White House's Middle Class Fairness initiative. As proposed, all employers with 10 or more employees who do not offer a workplace retirement plan would be required to automatically enroll all eligible workers in IRAs with a default investment choice. Employers would be given a generous tax credit to defray administrative expenses  –  $3,000 per year, plus a start-up bonus of $1,500 in the first year.

It doesn't sound like a bad deal for employers. But what, exactly, is in it for employees? After all, any working person who doesn't have a company plan already can open a personal IRA and have almost unlimited investment choices.

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