01(k)s and comparable plans – 403(b)s, 457s and Thrift Savings Plans – are methods to save for the retirement that your employer offers, or "sponsors." You might hear individuals describe them as "defined contribution plans." That name comes in the reality that you simply make contributions towards the plans – that's, you place your personal cash into them. (You might also hear your employer describe the strategy merely as "The Business X Savings Strategy.")
Here's how they break down:
Thrift Savings Plans (TSPs) are for federal workers.
401(k) plans would be the most typical kind of defined contribution strategy, so they are what you might study and hear about most frequently. But actually you will find no massive variations in between a 401(k) strategy and also the other defined contribution plans (beyond who can use them, obviously).