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North Korea reportedly executes top general
Chinese group bids $1.2B for Opera Software
Italy approves reforms  for small mutual banks
Walgreens may end partnership with Theranos
Cisco beats estimates and raises dividend
Amazon up after new share buyback plan
Dow, S&P's longest losing stretch in months
Dollar drops to 15-month low vs. yen
Mylan reaches $7.2 bln deal for Sweden's Meda
Burger King to sell hot dogs starting Feb. 23
U.S. government runs $55 billion budget surplus

Bass issues warning on China’s foreign cash reserves

Asahi offers  InBev $2.9B for Peroni, Grolsch

BP CEO calls for cuts to carbon emissions
Supreme Court blocks Obama’s carbon cuts

Twitter proves Wall Street critics were right
Twitter adds new timeline feature

Christie, Fiorina drop out of presidential race

Will falling oil prices bankrupt Saudis, Russians?
Cheap oil may make OPEC dominant again

Why did 2 top VC firms sell part of their stakes in Lyft?

Expedia doesn’t see Airbnb as a threat

Private-equity firms now buying back their own shares
Share buyback machine remains in overdrive

A new ‘Harry Potter’ book is coming this summer

What Apple, Amazon and Starbucks have in common

Portland Trail Blazers guards Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum live with ... mom
Meet the NBA stars who live with their mothers

Musician Lenny Kravitz owned the 19th-century Creole cottage in the French Quarter of New Orleans from 1994 to 2012. It's now back on the market at $1.16 million.

RE/Max N.O. Properties/Mansion Global
A bona fide celebrity abode — believe it or not
London house of the week has spiritual side
S.F. real estate looked like this in 2000, too
San Diego prices sending buyers northward
Location Scouts: Insider intel from top markets

A break for zombie-fighting Amazon developers

REIT bonus targets at heart of Brixmor scandal

Burberry sues, says J.C. Penney copied its designs
NRF expects retail sales to grow 3.1% in 2016

10 essential money questions to ask yourself today

Feds have removed a roadblock to driverless cars

Why is everyone freaking out about ‘CoCos’?

If you’re bullish on oil, Chevron and Exxon are buys here
If you’re bullish on oil, these stocks are buys

Social Security in the crosshairs: replacement rates again
Stage is being set for cuts to Social Security

Tricky tax issues you should know about this year

Why you should consider retiring abroad
Finding the best places to retire abroad
Expat retirees: How life has turned out

Is it wise to hold on to cash reserves?


IRS says identity thieves breached its systems
How to know if your tax preparer is a crook
Tax software firm warns of data breach
White House's lesson about online security

Will oil get so cheap, it won’t pay to extract it?


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Price Chg %Chg 1 Day
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/quotes/zigman/3173262/delayed 5,672 +40 0.71%
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/quotes/zigman/1709939/delayed 2,562 -20 0.79%
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/quotes/zigman/16008136/realtime/sampled 1.13 +0.00 0.01%
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/quotes/zigman/16008150/realtime/sampled 112.68 -0.67 0.59%
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/quotes/zigman/16008140/realtime/sampled 1.45 +0.00 0.02%
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/quotes/zigman/16008115/realtime/sampled 0.71 0.00 0.11%
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WSJ $ Idx
/quotes/zigman/41508961/realtime 88.84 -0.04 0.05%
U.S. 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866666/realtime 1.67 0.00 0.00%
German 10y
/quotes/zigman/15866409/realtime 0.24 0.00 0.00%
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/quotes/zigman/15866497/realtime 1.65 0.00 0.00%
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/quotes/zigman/32655632/delayed 15 +0 0.61%

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GOOG /quotes/zigman/59527964/composite 684.12 6.01 0.89%
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C /quotes/zigman/5065548/composite 37.41 -0.10 -0.27%
F /quotes/zigman/264304/composite 11.34 -0.01 -0.09%
T /quotes/zigman/398198/composite 36.43 -0.22 -0.60%
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5 yr CD
1.3%
2 yr CD
0.7%
1 yr CD
0.5%
MMA $10K+
0.2%
MMA $50K+
0.4%

National averages from Bankrate.com

You Don’t Need Another Credit Card, You Need A Better One.
Avg. APR Last Week 6 Months
Low Interest 11.96% 11.96% 11.62%
Business 13.12% 13.12% 12.85%
Student 13.42% 13.42% 13.14%
Balance Transfer 14.35% 14.35% 14.12%
Airline 15.17% 15.17% 15.10%
Cash Back 15.20% 15.26% 15.27%
Reward 15.25% 15.28% 15.14%
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Bad Credit 22.56% 22.88% 22.73%
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Encore
A blog about living in and planning for retirement

Among 401(k) Investors, a Big Information Gap

Question: How much time do you spend with the retirement-plan disclosures you receive from your 401(k) or individual retirement account?

Answer: Probably little more than the time you’ve just spent reading these two sentences.

Lightspring / Shutterstock.com

A new study from Limra, a Windsor, Conn., research and consulting firm, found that two-thirds of Americans with defined-contribution plans or IRAs spend less than five minutes scrutinizing each disclosure statement. About 20% say they rarely — or never — read the documents.

The research is tied to new rules from the Department of Labor, which require providers of 401(k)s and related savings plans to disclose additional information about fees, expenses and associated data in quarterly and annual statements. The goal: to help workers cut the cost of maintaining their accounts and building a nest egg.

The Limra study is an effort to gauge employees’ understanding of the new rules — and it highlights not only how little time most workers spend with their retirement-plan documents but also how little they know about their plans’ fees. Excessive fees, of course, can make a big difference in the eventual size of a nest egg. The Department of Labor offers the example of two 30-year-olds, each with $25,000 in a retirement account. The first account has an expense rate of 0.5%, the second has a rate of 1.5%. After 35 years, with identical investment returns of 7% (and no additional contributions), the first account would grow to $227,000 — but the second would total just $163,000.

Among the key findings:

  • Half of participants in defined-contribution plans said they have no idea how much they pay in annual fees and expenses.
  • Almost four in 10 surveyed workers (38%) believe they don’t pay any fees or expenses.
  • About one in eight (12%) participants in defined-contribution plans could offer an estimate of what their fees might be. The most common estimate: 1% of the account balance. (Limra cites a 2011 Deloitte/ICI study, which found that the “median defined-contribution-plan participant is in a plan with an all-in fee of 0.78% of assets, based on plans included in that study.”)

Will retirement-plan participants make use of the new disclosures? Reaction might well be “muted” at first, Limra states. That’s because surveyed workers indicated they aren’t really sure what to do with the information when they get it.

When asked how they might react if they learn that the fees in their retirement plan are higher than average, 31% said they didn’t know; 24% said they would move current assets into funds with lower fees; 21% said they would with speak with their employer about trying to reduce fees; and 16% said they would do nothing.

Comments

We welcome thoughtful comments from readers. Please comply with our guidelines. Our blogs do not require the use of your real name.

Comments (5 of 8)

View all Comments »
    • As always, a great article. Sorry to not greet your magazine at my mailbox each month any more.

      The fees should be shared on the first page, and broken out by annual cost for each fund, and any other overriding fees to the account. Not too complex.

      One should use the fees to make a simple decision – Do I contribute more than it takes to get a full match? Say my costs add to 1.5%. Not uncommon. If long term, I’m thinking I’ll deposit while in the 25% bracket but withdraw at 15%, it takes only 7 years with this plan to negate any benefit, may as well just invest post tax, or better yet, in an IRA. So to your point, dufus, knowledge is power.

    • What’s the point of reading about fees you don’t control? Either you participate in your employer’s 401k or you don’t. Stop writing articles that imply we have a choice, this is not a personal investment vehicle, it’s employer sponsored. Give us a break on the topic of compelling your employer to change 401k plans because of fees, fat chance..

    • One way around fees (and trying to figure them out) is to go self-directed with a Solo 401(k)( http://www.broadfinancial.com/solo-401k )After set-up, the only fee charged is one low annual fee which covers amendments and customer service. Because of the self-directed platform, investors don’t have to pay any fees because they handle all the investments themselves.

    • Hi

About Encore

  • Encore examines the changing nature of retirement, from new rules and guidelines for financial security to the shifting identities and priorities of today’s retirees. The blog also explores news that affects retirement, from the Wall Street Journal Digital Network and around the web. Lead bloggers are reporter Catey Hill and senior editor Jeremy Olshan. Other contributors include The Wall Street Journal’s retirement columnists Glenn Ruffenach and Anne Tergesen; the Director for the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, Alicia Munnell; and the Director of Research for Pinnacle Advisory Group, Michael Kitces, CFP.

MarketWatch - Stock Market Quotes, Business News, Financial News
Bulletin
Investor Alert

London Markets Open in:

need to know
North Korea reportedly executes top general
Chinese group bids $1.2B for Opera Software
Italy approves reforms  for small mutual banks
Walgreens may end partnership with Theranos
Cisco beats estimates and raises dividend
Amazon up after new share buyback plan
Dow, S&P's longest losing stretch in months
Dollar drops to 15-month low vs. yen
Mylan reaches $7.2 bln deal for Sweden's Meda
Burger King to sell hot dogs starting Feb. 23
U.S. government runs $55 billion budget surplus

Bass issues warning on China’s foreign cash reserves

Asahi offers  InBev $2.9B for Peroni, Grolsch

BP CEO calls for cuts to carbon emissions
Supreme Court blocks Obama’s carbon cuts

Twitter proves Wall Street critics were right
Twitter adds new timeline feature

Christie, Fiorina drop out of presidential race

Will falling oil prices bankrupt Saudis, Russians?
Cheap oil may make OPEC dominant again

Why did 2 top VC firms sell part of their stakes in Lyft?

Expedia doesn’t see Airbnb as a threat

Private-equity firms now buying back their own shares
Share buyback machine remains in overdrive

A new ‘Harry Potter’ book is coming this summer

What Apple, Amazon and Starbucks have in common

Portland Trail Blazers guards Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum live with ... mom
Meet the NBA stars who live with their mothers

Musician Lenny Kravitz owned the 19th-century Creole cottage in the French Quarter of New Orleans from 1994 to 2012. It's now back on the market at $1.16 million.

RE/Max N.O. Properties/Mansion Global
A bona fide celebrity abode — believe it or not
London house of the week has spiritual side
S.F. real estate looked like this in 2000, too
San Diego prices sending buyers northward
Location Scouts: Insider intel from top markets

A break for zombie-fighting Amazon developers

REIT bonus targets at heart of Brixmor scandal

Burberry sues, says J.C. Penney copied its designs
NRF expects retail sales to grow 3.1% in 2016

10 essential money questions to ask yourself today

Feds have removed a roadblock to driverless cars

Why is everyone freaking out about ‘CoCos’?

If you’re bullish on oil, Chevron and Exxon are buys here
If you’re bullish on oil, these stocks are buys

Social Security in the crosshairs: replacement rates again
Stage is being set for cuts to Social Security

Tricky tax issues you should know about this year

Why you should consider retiring abroad
Finding the best places to retire abroad
Expat retirees: How life has turned out

Is it wise to hold on to cash reserves?


IRS says identity thieves breached its systems
How to know if your tax preparer is a crook
Tax software firm warns of data breach
White House's lesson about online security

Will oil get so cheap, it won’t pay to extract it?


/conga/frontpage.html 367663

Markets »

122.29MDow Volume:
Avg Vol: 131.80M
Unchanged
201
Decliners
3048
Advancers
3255
Price Chg %Chg 1 Day
Range: 1 Day
  • 1 Day
  • 5 Days
  • 1 Month
  • 3 Months
  • 6 Months
  • 1 Year
  • 2 Years
Dow
/quotes/zigman/627449/realtime 15,915 -100 0.62%
Nasdaq
/quotes/zigman/12633936/realtime 4,284 +15 0.35%
S&P 500
/quotes/zigman/3870025/realtime 1,852 0 0.02%
GlobalDow
/quotes/zigman/629063/realtime 2,082 +2 0.11%
Gold
/quotes/zigman/33772884/delayed 1,208 +13 1.09%
Oil
/quotes/zigman/2260836/delayed 27.03 -0.42 1.53%
FTSE 100
/quotes/zigman/3173262/delayed 5,672 +40 0.71%
DAX
/quotes/zigman/2380246/delayed 9,017 +138 1.55%
CAC 40
/quotes/zigman/3173214/delayed 4,061 +64 1.59%
FTSE MIB
/quotes/zigman/1482176/delayed 16,714 +801 5.03%
IBEX 35
/quotes/zigman/2759620/delayed 8,144 +216 2.73%
Stoxx 600
/quotes/zigman/2380150/delayed 315 +6 1.87%
Asia Dow
/quotes/zigman/6959860/realtime 2,439 -15 0.59%
Nikkei 225
/quotes/zigman/5986735/delayed 15,713 -372 2.31%
Hang Seng
/quotes/zigman/2622475/delayed 18,532 -757 3.92%
Shanghai
/quotes/zigman/1859015/delayed 2,763 -18 0.63%
Sensex
/quotes/zigman/1652085/delayed 23,584 -175 0.74%
Singapore
/quotes/zigman/1709939/delayed 2,562 -20 0.79%
Euro
/quotes/zigman/16008136/realtime/sampled 1.13 +0.00 0.01%
Yen
/quotes/zigman/16008150/realtime/sampled 112.68 -0.67 0.59%
Pound
/quotes/zigman/16008140/realtime/sampled 1.45 +0.00 0.02%
Australia$
/quotes/zigman/16008115/realtime/sampled 0.71 0.00 0.11%
DXY Index
/quotes/zigman/1652083/delayed 95.74 -0.09 0.09%
WSJ $ Idx
/quotes/zigman/41508961/realtime 88.84 -0.04 0.05%
U.S. 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866666/realtime 1.67 0.00 0.00%
German 10y
/quotes/zigman/15866409/realtime 0.24 0.00 0.00%
Italy 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866497/realtime 1.65 0.00 0.00%
Spain 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866444/realtime 1.72 0.00 0.00%
U.K. 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866328/realtime 1.42 0.00 0.00%
Japan 10yr
/quotes/zigman/15866525/realtime 0.01 0.00 0.00%
Crude Oil
/quotes/zigman/2260836/delayed 27 0 1.53%
Gold
/quotes/zigman/33772884/delayed 1,208 +13 1.09%
Corn
/quotes/zigman/25518691/delayed 360 0 0.00%
DJIA F
/quotes/zigman/48241424/delayed 15,795 -71 0.45%
S&P F
/quotes/zigman/43106711/delayed 1,839 -8 0.45%
Silver
/quotes/zigman/32655632/delayed 15 +0 0.61%

Quotes

Symbol Price Change % Change
FB /quotes/zigman/9962609/composite 101.00 1.46 1.47%
AAPL /quotes/zigman/68270/composite 94.27 -0.72 -0.76%
GOOG /quotes/zigman/59527964/composite 684.12 6.01 0.89%
BAC /quotes/zigman/190927/composite 11.98 -0.22 -1.80%
C /quotes/zigman/5065548/composite 37.41 -0.10 -0.27%
F /quotes/zigman/264304/composite 11.34 -0.01 -0.09%
T /quotes/zigman/398198/composite 36.43 -0.22 -0.60%
BP /quotes/zigman/247026/composite 28.04 -0.31 -1.09%
GE /quotes/zigman/227468/composite 28.30 0.02 0.07%
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Rates »

5 yr CD
1.3%
2 yr CD
0.7%
1 yr CD
0.5%
MMA $10K+
0.2%
MMA $50K+
0.4%

National averages from Bankrate.com

You Don’t Need Another Credit Card, You Need A Better One.
Avg. APR Last Week 6 Months
Low Interest 11.96% 11.96% 11.62%
Business 13.12% 13.12% 12.85%
Student 13.42% 13.42% 13.14%
Balance Transfer 14.35% 14.35% 14.12%
Airline 15.17% 15.17% 15.10%
Cash Back 15.20% 15.26% 15.27%
Reward 15.25% 15.28% 15.14%
Instant Approval 18.02% 18.21% 18.00%
Bad Credit 22.56% 22.88% 22.73%
Source:CreditCards.com

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