in canada we have something similar to your 401 K , it's called "registered retirement savings plan" ( RRSP for short) and once one is in the "withdrawal stage" (which we have been for some years ) , it's called "registered retirement income fund" ( RRIF ) .
basically it's the same : you contribute during your working years - you withdraw in your retirement years .
i worked most of my life for one of canada's better (so somewhat small) life insurance companies . we had a "contributary pension plan" with matching contributions .
luckily , my pension is still of the "defined benefit plan " - my pension was based upon earnings plus years worked - certainly a very good deal .
since the company was and is family owned , the company has always been very stable - slow (somtimes very slow) growth but stable business was and is what the owners want .
since the family is of scottish background , they can be said to be very prudent with their money (and my pension ) .
our main retirement income consists of several pensions and we have only a modest amount in the market - and most of that is in GIC's (guaranteed investment certificates - guaranteed by the government of canada through the federal deposit insurance corporation . )
as long as the whole of canada does not go down the tube , we'll probably get through our remaining retirement years .
when we talk about "long-term plans " , we probably mean : what should we have for lunch today ?
still , i do keep my eyes on the market - even if only out of curiosity - like someone watching the olympic games but not actively participating .
take care .