401(k) Costs

Physician's Money Digest, August15 2004, Volume 11, Issue 15


One problem with a 401(k) plan isthat you may not have a lot of investmentchoices. Employees looking for low-costfunds, for example, may be stymied if the401(k) plan offers only funds withinflated expense ratios. That situationcan be even worse, according to TedBenna, the father of the 401(k) plan, ifthe employee gets saddled with payingthe plan's administrative expenses aswell. It's not always easy to tell whetheryou're being hit up for administrativecosts. Often an administrator will sellthe employer a no-fee 401(k) plan andsimply fold the administrative chargesinto the fund expenses. Ask youremployer whether you're paying part ofthe plan's administrative costs and howmuch—about 1% is not unreasonable,Benna says. More than 50% of US physicianparticipate in a 401(k) plan.