Table: Playing Catch-up

A few provisions in the retirement savings bill before Congress purports to benefit women who have returned to work after childrearing or divorce. Here's what they would do:

-- Increase the limit on contributions to 401(k) plans to $15,000 from $10,500

-- People age 50 and older could put away an extra $5,000, or to $20,000 in total

-- Gradually raise the current $2,000 annual contribution limit for traditional and Roth IRAs to $5,000 by 2003

-- Those 50 and older could contribute $5,000 immediately (or a total of $7,500, under the Senate version)

-- Shorten employer-offered pension vesting to three years from five. Median job tenure is three years for women and five years for men

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