“During the past two decades, 401(k) plans have become a popular workplace benefit, valued for their role in providing employees a means to set aside a portion of their compensation on a tax-favored basis. Indeed, 401(k) plans have become the most common defined-contribution (DC) plan, holding $2.8 trillion in assets at year-end 2009.”—Investment Company Institute, “The Economics of Providing 401(k) Plans: Services, Fees, and Expenses, 2009”
All well and good, but with fund products that didn’t deliver, high fees, new regulation and global market volatility, the fund industry is facing headwinds as we head for 2011. And let’s not forget their involvement in, and response to, the problem of ensuring stable and consistent income in retirement. Some are addressing all these problems more effectively than others, and advisors and plan participants are voting with their wallets. Which companies are getting it right? We take a look at some of the top plans by assets. A few might surprise you.