Triune Retirement Plans Frequently Asked Questions
- Who are our retirement plan clients?
- What makes Triune's retirement plan services different?
- How do I know if Triune can make a difference in my retirement plan?
- What sort of 401(k) products are out there today?
- What sort of arrangement is best for my company?
- Q. Who are our retirement plan clients?
A. Our clients represent a broad cross-section of the business and not-for-profit communities, and include Pension, Profit Sharing, 401(k) Plans as well as IRA-based programs like SIMPLE's & SEP's. Some of our best clients are within the following industries:
- Physician Groups & other Medical firms
- Dental practices
- Law Firms
- Engineers & Architects
- Accounting & Consulting Firms
- Manufacturing & Distribution Firms
- Automotive Dealers
- Closely-held & other Family Businesses
- Churches, Charities & Philanthropic organizations
- Q. What makes Triune's retirement plan services different?
A. We exist to serve you. The following is a list of characteristics that we believe are essential to be able to do so effectively:
- Independence. Triune is not affiliated with any mutual fund company, bank or investment banking firm. Our only incentive is to generate results for our clients.
- Transparent fee disclosure: Triune was among the first firms to disclose all of the expenses associated with 401(k) and other Retirement Plans. Often these expenses are significant and needlessly drag down fund returns. With Triune, you will always know exactly what expenses are being charged against your plan and by whom.
- Access to the world's best investments: Triune offers a virtually unlimited array of mutual funds, exchange traded funds (ETF's), individual securities, etc. And since we are an independent firm, the only "proprietary products" we have to offer are our qualifications and years of experience working with clients.
- A preference for low fund expenses: Minimizing fees matters. Over time, high plan fees and expenses can be a significant drag on wealth creation. Triune utilizes investments with low management fees, and all so-called "soft-dollars" are credited back to your plan and its participants.
- Evidence to support our investment convictions: Investors are rewarded in proportion to the risk they take. Framing decisions around compensated risk factors in the equity and bond markets connects investors to the forces that create opportunities to build wealth over time. Financial science over the last fifty years offers insight into these risks by bringing to us a powerful understanding of the risks that are worth taking and the risks that are not. We pride ourselves upon bringing this information to light to help you make informed decisions.
- Simplified investment selection for your employees: Even with access to the best investments and reams of evidence to support our convictions, our experience shows that at least 90% of your employees may be confused regarding which investment to choose for his or her account. Thus, Triune offers professionally-managed portfolios coupled with assistance for every employee regarding which portfolio would be most appropriate for their situation. These portfolios are broadly-diversified and managed with skill, care and prudence. Their investment mix can be tied either to a "target retirement date" or a person's risk tolerance.
- Ongoing local, personal service: Triune professionals meet regularly with your investment committee, trustees and/or operational staff. These updates cover comprehensive, up-to-date information about your plan including performance benchmarking, full disclosure of all expenses, and competitive, market-based information. We work continually to monitor and, when necessary, revised your retirement plan.
- Participant education: Businesses and other organizations sponsoring a 401(k) or similar retirement plan are now required by the U.S. Department of Labor to fully-inform plan participants regarding all aspects of their plans, from investments choices, to plan design, to plan expenses, etc. Triune professionals work to provide regular updates to all participants. These updates are conducted in-person and on-site whenever possible.
- Coordination of all retirement plan services: Retirement plans often seem complex and typically require a multitude of plan functions (recordkeeping, compliance & administration services, investments, etc.). As you know, these functions may be provided through multiple entities. However, Triune is your single point-of-contact, managing all of the other professionals involved in servicing your plan. You always know whom to call with questions or concerns: Triune.
- National expertise, local service. Triune works in their back office with national partners to provide you with "best-in-class" services and expertise for your retirement plan. Yet we are here, locally, and available to respond quickly to your needs.
- Q. How do I know if Triune can make a difference in my retirement Plan?
A. You might start by asking some questions about your current retirement plan, such as:
- Are my investment choices limited or can I be assured I am getting access to the best investments?
- How do the investment returns I am getting compare with others' returns, or against appropriate performance benchmarks?
- What are the total expenses charged against my retirement plan? Does my current advisor freely provide this data? Who is getting paid what specific fee?
- Are those expenses "reasonable"?
- Are hidden expenses dragging down my fund returns?
- Do I get credit for all so-called "soft-dollars" that may be paid to my plan?
- Does my current advisor contact me, in advance, to schedule regular reviews?
- Are my employees informed?
- If given the choice, what would I change or do differently regarding my 401(k) or similar plan?
- Q. What sort of 401(k) products are out there today?
A. Virtually all 401(k) arrangements fall into one of the following three categories
- Proprietary Mutual Fund - A mutual fund family (American Funds, Fidelity or Vanguard, for example) offers full-service record keeping and plan administration, with a requirement to invest in some or all of their proprietary funds.
- Group Annuity - An insurance company (John Hancock, MassMutual or Principal, for example) offers a series of pooled investment accounts that are unitized into shares in order to be reflected on a daily valued 401k record keeping system.
- Open Architecture - The hub of this arrangement is the record keeping entity (Bank of Oklahoma, DailyAccess Corp. or K-Trade, for example) as opposed to a mutual fund, bank or insurance company. This format allows the plan sponsor to select virtually any fund or publicly-traded investment to be included in their plan. Advances in record keeping and trading technology have made this arrangement a reasonably priced alternative.
- Q. What sort of arrangement is best for my company?
A. There is no carte-blanch answer for all scenarios. Each of these alternatives has merit, but the key is suitability. Triune can help you define your priorities and evaluate your market-based alternatives.