It’s that time of year when all good-hearted Americans break out their legal pads, pencils and reading glasses. Yes, it’s time for fantasy football. Once a small offshoot of its progenitor fantasy baseball, it has become the favorite fall pastime, surpassing even its real-world counterpart. Indeed, given the recent creativity among game and league promoters, fantasy football is threatening to even overtake that long-time office pool favorite, the Superbowl square.
See also: The real issue with 401(k) fees
As you scan those perennial football fantasy magazines, all chock-full of every vital statistic this side of Canton, Ohio, consider the following: It just doesn’t matter.
I speak neither of heresy nor as a disgruntled Buffalo Bills fan. I speak only of the truth. For on the gridiron, what matters isn’t yards-per-carry, touchdown passes, fumbles recovered, sacks or any other number from the data banks of Elias Sports. Only one thing matters: The final score.
That’s right. Everything else may contribute (or not, see “winning ugly”) to the final score, but the only thing that really counts is whether you can add another notch to the win column.
Retirement plans are sort of the same way. We love to measure fees and performance because we’ve been told they’re critical when it comes to meeting your retirement goals. But, in the grand scheme of things, just like those football statistics, we measure fees and performance for only one reason — they’re easy to measure. But, as industry veterans have noted, (see, “Do Common Benchmarks Mislead the 401(k) Fiduciary?” FiduciaryNews.com, Aug. 27, 2013), there are other, better 401(k) benchmarks.