People standing around robots. Algorithms aren’t nearly as cute as robots. Should we change how we talk about robo-advisors? (Photo: AP)

NASHVILLE — In the retirement planning industry, words matter as much as numbers. Take the phrase “robo-advisor.”

It conjures images of that cute can on wheels, R2D2, who rescues Skywalker and Solo et al time and again. Calling robo-advisors what they really are, algorithms that can make investing decisions, is not quite as sexy, as advisors attending technology sessions at this year’s NAPA 401(k) Summit might realize.

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C.J. Marwitz

C.J. Marwitz is a writer and editor.

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