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Barry Ritholtz

How You Can Hack Your Retirement Plan

Your future self will be thankful.

Think it over.

Think it over.

Photographer: Phil Carrick/Fairfax Media/Getty Images

The holiday weekend has come and gone. Did it meet expectations? Did it provide, if you are of a certain age or inclination, a moment to reflect on the future -- more specifically, your future?

If not, it was a lost opportunity. But I am here to help, by jump-starting the conversation you should have had with yourself. And so I will propose that we start by taking a look at how you and your employer and plan sponsors can hack your retirement.

Now some of this has applications in how you manage your leisure time, as many of you just did over the Fourth of July holiday, or everyday consumer purchases. For that we can thank behavioral economics, a transformative science whose proponents -- folks like Richard Thaler, Robert Shiller, and Danny Kahneman -- have won Nobel prizes and changed how we think about decision-making.

But there are so many psychological and behavioral aspects to investing, so I am going to limit our discussion to retirement planning. Here's how to start: