As discussed in previous articles, 参与者的储蓄无疑是改善退休准备的最关键因素. Although less critical than savings, the return on investment is also important in helping improve participant outcomes. 本文将简要介绍自20世纪80年代以来投资菜单是如何演变的, 然后解决过多的投资选择给参与者带来的一些问题.

投资菜单进化

在2013年4月的一篇论文中, “投资菜单上有什么?” 机构投资协会(DCIIA)简要介绍了自20世纪80年代固定缴款计划数量开始增加以来,固定缴款计划(DC)投资菜单的演变过程. 20世纪80年代的典型计划的特点是机构提供的产品数量有限, 通常是3到5个. 通常,稳定价值基金和公司股票基金是参与者最受欢迎的选择. As the number of plans and assets held continued to grow in the 1990s, DC计划通过增加更多的选项来应对来自更积极参与者的压力. It was not unusual for plans to have 30 or more offerings of retail mutual funds. 从21世纪初开始, t在这里 has been a trend of investment menu simplification; however, 20只或更多的股票(不包括目标日期基金)仍然很常见, 如果有的话).

为什么改变? 简化趋势的主要驱动因素是来自行为金融学领域的研究. Some of this research looked at the relationship between plan participation, 资产配置决策, and the size of plan investment menus. The results began to raise questions about the benefits of large investment menus.

So What’s Wrong With Lots of Choices?
虽然说, “投资选择越多, 更好的,这似乎是一个显而易见的问题, the research by behavioral finance academics does not appear to support it. 在他的书中, 401 (k)信托解决方案, Christopher Carosa cites several articles on relevant research in this area. Two of the common conclusions from the cited research are particularly eye-opening. 第一个, 基金选择数与参与率呈负相关关系. 第二个, 大量的基金选择似乎会对参与者的资产配置决策产生负面影响. Neither of these results bode well for participants’ retirement readiness.

如果你是一个对投资感兴趣和有知识的正规的购彩app下载,或者有一个精明的投资顾问, then an abundance of choices may not be a bad thing. However, only a very small minority of plan participants meet this description. The “average” participant is not very sophisticated when it comes to investing. When faced with numerous choices, paralysis sets in and the employee either does not participate at all, 或者延迟他/她的参与. My own experience from talking with friends, 亲戚, 熟正规的购彩app下载, and even employees of my firm (before we adopted auto enroll), 证实了这一现象. 许多正规的购彩app下载描述了他们的瘫痪,并表示他们只是需要时间来调查投资选择.

In addition to its impact on the participation rate, the investment menu can also negatively impact allocation decisions. The larger the number of choices, 此外, 对于普通参与者来说,构建一个合理配置的投资组合就越困难. Research has shown that more choices result in poor allocation decisions. 正如研究正规的购彩app下载员所指出的,一个常见的分配问题包括过度保守的分配(e.g. big allocations to stable value or money market options). Another one often cited is the use of simplistic allocation methods (e.g. equal allocations to all funds). 这两种分配方法都不能为参与者的退休储蓄带来一个合适的投资组合.

Summary
过多的投资基金选择会对你的计划参与率和参与者的投资配置产生负面影响. 因此,帮助参与者做好退休准备的目标受到阻碍. 作为计划赞助商, 您应该评估您的计划的投资菜单,以确定是否可以改进,以帮助驱动更好的参与者结果.

在未来的文章中,我们将讨论在投资菜单中包括目标日期基金,以及其他帮助参与者作出分配决定的方法. 点击 在这里 to view more resources on this subject.