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ONE MIDSIZED EMPLOYER IN FIVE HAS DROPPED WORKER RETIREMENT PROGRAM, REVEALS STUDY BY GRANT THORNTON

 WASHINGTON, March 29 /PRNewswire/ -- Burdensome government regulations and spiraling costs have at one time forced one-fifth of America's small and midsized employers to terminate employee retirement plans, according to a recent national study conducted by Grant Thornton, a major accounting and management consulting firm.
 A survey of 1,469 companies with fewer than 1,000 employees reveals that 22 percent had abandoned their employee retirement plans.
 One-third of those employers blame onerous government rules, while 27 percent attribute the terminations to high funding costs, the study found.
 "Employers who offer defined benefit plans are subject to numerous administrative requirements as the result of changes in the law and increasing regulations imposed by the Internal Revenue Service, the Department of Labor and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation," says Andrew E. Zuckerman, director, employee benefits, with Grant Thornton's Washington office.
 "For smaller organizations, the compliance headaches often outweigh the advantages of offering retirement programs to their employees," he adds.
 By far, the most popular retirement program option for midsized companies is the 401(k) plan, which enables companies and employees to share contribution costs and provides numerous tax benefits. Employers provide 401(k) plans almost two to one over pensions, the study found.
 Grant Thornton, based in Chicago, provides tax, accounting, audit, employee benefits and management consulting services to companies throughout the United States. Worldwide, clients are served through Grant Thornton International, an organization of leading accounting firms in more than 60 countries.
 -0- 3/29/93
 /CONTACT: Liz DeIuliis of Grant Thornton Public Relations, 212-599-0100, or Andrew Zuckerman, 212-861-4152, for Grant Thornton Public Relations/


CO: Grant Thornton ST: District of Columbia IN: SU: ECO

TS -- NY086 -- 0634 03/29/93 15:32 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Mar 29, 1993
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