NU Online News Service, Jan. 18, 2005, 5:27 p.m. EST

Only about 12% of employees at large companies know much about retirement benefits.[@@]

That’s the conclusion of a group of benefits managers at 200 large U.S. employers who participated in a survey sponsored by Hewitt Associates Inc., Lincolnshire, Ill.

Only 18% of the survey participants said they were confident that employees would retire with adequate retirement assets, and 70% of the managers said their companies want to do more to help employees diversify.

About half said their companies want to help employees further by automating tasks such as asset rebalancing.

Only 27% said their companies will take advantage of the new rules that let employers roll more small retirement plan accounts into outside individual retirement arrangements, and only 28% said their companies are somewhat or very likely to set up phased retirement programs this year.