Shrinking 401(k) Balances Not Motivating Investors to Review the
Insurance Advocate (12/31/02) Vol. 113, No. 48 p.26; Dugas, Christine

A recent study conducted by Mutual of Omaha and the Profit Sharing/401(k) Council of America (PSCA) indicated that retirement plan participants are even more inactive about monitoring their plans than they were in 2000 when the last survey was conducted. In 2000, 3 percent of those surveyed indicated that they spent no time at all reviewing their retirement plans and 75 percent spend less than 10 hours reviewing their plans, but recent results illustrate a significant jump in participants' apathy toward their savings plans--81 percent spent less than 10 hours reviewing them and 9 percent spend no time at all on their plans. Experts agree that plan participants' confidence in their investments has dropped significantly, but warn that inaction is just as risky to their returns. Moreover, the number of fund choices has increased, causing many participants to be overwhelmed--8 percent believe there are more funds than are needed in their plans. Respondents of the survey also indicated that they would prefer an asset allocation model that disperses investments according to risk tolerance or retirement goals, which gives participants the freedom to be passive rather than aggressive in their planning.


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