Plan sponsors report 1 percent reaction to fee disclosures

Revolution in the streets may be a great soundbite for Donald Trump, but in the retirement planning business, the public outcry - or any reaction at all to recent 401(k) fee disclosures - appears to have been overestimated.

In fact, the Plan Sponsor Council of America's October survey of fee disclosure's impact on participants shows a 1.4 percent jump in the number of 401(k) investors who quizzed their plan sponsors about the details included in those disclosure statements.

Admittedly, those numbers may jump next week when the next round of more detailed fee disclosures are issued on Nov. 14, but PSCA says the early indications are a resoundingly neutral reaction to disclosures thus far.

According to the survey, 95.9 percent of plan sponsors reported absolutely no change in participant behavior as a result of the fee disclosure information, though seeing the costs more clearly did mean 15.4 percent of plan sponsors were motivated to send out an RFP or RFI to shop around for better plan opportunities.

A full quarter of plans with between 100 and 1,000 participants reported that the disclosure regs prompted them to look for better options.

Of the tiny percentage of participants who did read their disclosures and decide to ask their plan sponsors to make some changes, less than 3 percent called to request changes in their asset allocations, plus a small percentage asking to add or drop an investment fund or to increase their deferral rate. 



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