Best and Worst States for 401(k) Participation

PlanPro’s first annual 401(k) state trends report analyzes 401(k) trends including participation rates, autoenrollment and employer contribution coverage. This report uses PlanPro’s proprietary database which is comprised of the latest plan data submitted to the Department of Labor for 2016.

For data on states not included or questions please reach out to info@planprofessional.com.

 

Key Findings

  • Delaware is the state with the highest 401(k) participation rate while Nevada is the state with the lowest participation
  • While our research shows plans with autoenrollment have 10%+ higher participation, we see varying amounts of autoenrollment at the top and the bottom of our state participation list
  • A surprisingly small 12.9% of 401(k) plans nationally offer autoenrollment. Iowa tops the list with 20.5% of plans having autoenrollment while West Virginia falls in last place at 5.1%.
  • Nearly 90% of employers contribute to their 401(k) plans, and this level remains relatively stable by state. South Dakota tops the list at 93.7% of employers contributing. However, California falls in last place with only 77.1% contributing.

 

National Statistics
Participation Rate72.2%
Employers w/ Autoenroll12.9%
Employers that Contribute87.9%

 

States with Top Participation Rates

 StateParticipation RateEmployers w/ AutoenrollEmployers that Contribute
1Delaware89.5%10.2%87.6%
2Connecticut87.9%11.6%83.8%
3Iowa85.2%20.5%90.9%
4North Dakota83.7%10.4%93.4%
5Hawaii81.5%8.1%84.5%
6New Mexico80.6%11.1%89.9%
7Vermont80.5%12.6%90.6%
8Wyoming79.9%7.4%91.7%
9New Jersey79.7%11.2%78.6%
10Oregon79.7%13.8%88.0%

 

States with Bottom Participation Rates

 StateParticipation RateEmployers w/ AutoenrollEmployers that Contribute
50Nevada54.6%12.3%85.1%
49Oklahoma58.9%14.0%92.0%
48Georgia59.6%13.7%86.5%
47Tennessee59.8%11.0%88.5%
46Florida60.3%11.2%85.8%
45Arkansas62.0%7.9%91.7%
44Idaho63.6%14.6%91.7%
43Arizona64.1%16.6%81.7%
42Ohio67.1%13.6%88.6%
41Maryland67.7%12.8%84.8%