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Fuller Addresses Retirement Savings Gap at Milken Institute Global Conference

Remarks center on Transamerica’s focus on becoming America’s leading middle market life insurance and retirement company

Transamerica CEO Will Fuller took the stage at the Milken Institute Global Conference in California in early May, joining an esteemed group of financial services leaders to discuss the future of America’s retirement landscape. Fuller joined leaders from TIAA, Nationwide and Edward Jones at the annual event that showcases innovation and solutions to shape a better future.

“We have major access gaps,” Fuller remarked. “Thirty percent of workers don’t have access to a company-sponsored retirement plan. Our mission is about how we solve the access problem with advice for main street American families who are relatively underserved.”

There was consensus on the need to improve access to retirement plans and work together across party lines and industries to address the retirement challenges of American workers. Fuller’s remarks focused on concrete solutions. He highlighted a Maryland public-private partnership that offers retirement plans to workers that may not have an employer-sponsored 401k. He noted that solutions like these are especially timely due to the expansion of the gig economy.

“I’m hopeful [state programs] prompt more employers to realize offering a retirement plan is really kind of the base relationship you have with your employees,” Fuller said. “And I’m hopeful that the government will cut a lot of the red tape and cut the cost to help small businesses who don’t have big HR departments.”

Fuller also discussed innovations in the retirement space and how technology can make the delivery of financial services more affordable.  

Financial literacy was another key topic discussed. Fuller’s recommendations included starting financial literacy education sooner, and incentivizing careers in financial advice to reach more diverse populations. 

“People are feeling the pinch of inflation and higher interest rates,” Fuller said. “Our research says anxiety, anger, feelings of shame, and disenfranchisement are rising. We’re very focused on helping our population now, and in the future by supporting more financial education to our nation’s schools.”

Catherine Collinson, CEO and president of the nonprofit Transamerica Institute, currently serves on the advisory board to the Milken Institute’s Center for the Future of Aging, which focuses on health, wealth, and the longevity economy. 

The Milken Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank. The conference lineup included Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah of Jordan; President William J. Clinton; Former UK Prime Minister Theresa May; U.S. House Representative Kevin McCarthy; Elon Musk, Co-Founder at Tesla; and actress and producer Kerry Washington.