This year the 401(k) plan hits age 40. The plan has evolved from what it started out as — a relatively simple savings plan intended as a supplement to a pension plan — to become a replacement for pension plans, which are going the way of the dodo.

That doesn't mean the structure of the 401(k) has stayed the same.

In its 61st annual survey of profit sharing and 401(k) plans, the Plan Sponsor Council of America has found plenty of changes—and not just in structure, but in features to make such plans more effective savings vehicles.

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Marlene Satter

Marlene Y. Satter has worked in and written about the financial industry for decades.