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How does wells fargo advice track 401k plan compare to other plans?

May 26, 2013 by Carol from Roanoke, VA in  |  Flag
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Carol,

I am going to give you an answer based on the premise that you are asking about the quality of the investments in the plan, not the "advice" given. Furthermore, I don't have a copy of your exact plan, so I can't comment on specifics.

But, in my experience, in my area, the Wells Fargo plans I have seen have been average at best. They include many of their own Wells Fargo funds; many of these funds are expensive (high expense ratios) and have high turnover (also adds to costs). The saving grace is that many of the WF plans have have a few, less expensive index fund options. However, as mentioned above, if your firm has generous matching provisions, you still likely should participate.

My advice would be to seek the advice of a disinterested third party to give you an honest opinion of your plan.

Comment   |  Flag   |  May 30, 2013 from Oshkosh, WI

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Carol,

I agree with other responses that your question needs to be a bit more specific and clear, before anyone can give you meaningful advice.

However, assuming that you are asking a question that pertains to your current 401(K) plan, I would suggest that you start by tracking the plan on "Brightscope". This should be a go to resource for any plan participant to check how the Plan Sponsors and Administrators are doing picking the Advisors and/or Money Managers. This will provide you an idea of how well Wells Fargo is performing overall, although it might not give you an idea of the specific investment choices they have picked for the plan.

Hopefully this give you some food for thought.

Comment   |  Flag   |  May 31, 2013 from Appleton, WI

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Carol, are you asking how the investment advice from your advisor compares with others, or are you asking how the plan itself compares to other plans? Unfortunately, both of my answers are going to be kind of vague. If you can re-define the question, maybe I could be more specific.

Most actual 401(k) plans do not give specific advice. However, there may be an individual investment advisor that is giving employees of your company advice. We would have no idea as to the quality of that advice.

By reputation, Wells Fargo has a decent 401(k) plan. Plans are customized to at least some degree. So, a smaller plan is likely to have requirements for more proprietary funds, and may have higher fees than some of its competitors. Larger plans tend to have the flexibility to be more competitive.

From the employee perspective, it is an opportunity to save for retirement on a tax-advantaged basis, possibly with an employer match. So while I can’t really score your plan, it’s most probably a good thing that you have it, and you should take advantage of it, if you can. I’m not sure if I addressed the intent of your question. Hope this helps.

Comment   |  Flag   |  May 28, 2013 from Delray Beach, FL

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