Human Resources
Thought Leadership

Help in Defined Contribution Plans: 2006 Through 2010

This report looks at the impact of professional investment help—target-date funds, managed accounts, and online advice, collectively referred to as “Help” throughout this report—in employer-sponsored defined contribution plans. It includes analysis of eight large 401(k) plans representing more than 425,000 individual participants with $25 billion in plan assets. By linking participant Help usage with actual results, we were able to observe how participant behavior affected portfolio risk and returns during the five-year period between January 1, 2006 and December 31, 2010, which was one of the most volatile periods in the stock market’s history. This analysis extends the first edition of the report (Help in Defined Contribution Plans: Is It Working and for Whom? (2010)), which examined the period between 2006 and 2008.

Help in Defined Contribution Plans: 2006 Through 2010