Fees for 401(k) plans fell once again this year, a trend fueled in part by litigation, fee disclosure rules and demands from larger sponsors to cut expenses, according to NEPC's annual review of employer-sponsored defined contribution plans. 

The median fees on plans for 2014 were .52 percent, or 52 cents paid for every $100 of plan assets. That is a decrease from .53 percent in 2013 and a big drop from .59 percent in 2010. 

NEPC takes investment management costs, recordkeeping fees and trust and custodial costs into account when estimating fees. 

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Nick Thornton

Nick Thornton is a financial writer covering retirement and health care issues for BenefitsPRO and ALM Media. He greatly enjoys learning from the vast minds in the legal, academic, advisory and money management communities when covering the retirement space. He's also written on international marketing trends, financial institution risk management, defense and energy issues, the restaurant industry in New York City, surfing, cigars, rum, travel, and fishing. When not writing, he's pushing into some land or water.