- EBRI Issue Briefs - a variety of reports, including (1) Employment-Based Retirement Plan Participation: Geographic Differences and Trends: 2011, (2) Individual Account Retirement Plans: An Analysis of the 2010 Survey of Consumer Finances, and (3) 401(k) Plan Asset Allocation: Account Balances,and Loan Activity in 2010. Also be sure to check out EBRI's comprehensive Data Book, which focuses more broadly on the entire employee benefits system.
- National Compensation Survey - issued by the Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, this report provides high-level information on access to, participation in, and take-up rates for retirement plans.
- PlanSponsor Magazine's DC Survey - numerous categories culled from responses of over 5,900 employers. Some of these topics include average expense ratios, duration of client relationships, default investments for auto-enrollment, measures of plan success, and much more. The DC Survey also contains best-in-class provider ratings for participant and plan sponsor services.
- The Vanguard Group's How America Saves 2012 - this report contains dozens of pages of benchmarks based on Vanguard's 1,700 plan sponsor defined contribution clients and 3+ million participants.
- Principal Financial's Total View - a report released every other year based on Principal's own client base, it includes data on defined contribution, defined benefit, employee stock ownership, and nonqualified plans
This list is not intended to be a complete one. There are probably dozens of other reports that also would be helpful in benchmarking retirement plans. Hopefully, this brief list will prove useful in getting started.