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Below are the 2017 retirement plan limits.  Figures that changed are in bold.


2017 2016 2015
Employee Deferrals to 401(k), 403(b and 457(b) plans $18,000 $18,000 $18,000
Catch-Up Deferrals (Over Age 50) $6,000 $6,000 $6,000
Total Contribution Limit
(Employee + Employer)
$54,000 $53,000 $53,000
Highly Compensated Employee (HCE)
This is the income threshold used to determine if an employee is considered “HCE”
$120,000 $120,000 $120,000
Social Security Wage Base
6.2% social security tax is deducted from pay up to this amount.
$127,200 $118,500 $118,500
IRA for individuals (49 and below) $5,500 $5,500 $5,500
IRA for individuals (50 and above) $6,500 $6,500 $6,500


Quick Thoughts:

  • Savers in 2016 – use this as a reminder that you still have about 2 months to increase your contributions to your retirement plan to reach the maximum.
  • Savers in 2017 – the limits do not change so either keep your savings rate the same or increase your per pay contributions starting January so you will hit the maximum by year end.
  • Social Security – the largest increase from 2016 is to the socials security wage base this was done as an act of Congress (yes, you read that right) to more raise tax revenues that can be used to improve the financial health of the social security program to meet future obligations to retirees.  Expect to hear more about comprehensive tax reform over the next couple of years, a large part of it to help address the lack of funding for Social Security and Medicare.