When creating and monitoring a retirement plan, and providing advice on how to best achieve your financial goals, we often run into a roadblock on implementation when a large portion of your wealth is tied up in an employer retirement plan. This isn’t to say that participating in your employer plan is a bad thing; it’s more an issue related to investment options, fees and how to best align that account with your overall investment plan. By incorporating your outside retirement plans into your overall allocation, we can now pick the best investment options available in your retirement plan and manage your wealth like it’s one portfolio, instead of viewing accounts separately.
The benefits of incorporating your outside retirement plan into your overall asset mix include the following.
- Higher net-of-fee, risk-adjusted expected returns through:
- Stronger small and value tilts
- Greater diversification with more international exposure, larger exposure to specialized risk premiums (Reinsurance and Marketplace Lending) and reduction in concentrated stock positions
- Closing the behavior gap (reduced performance chasing)
- Lower expense ratios
- Disciplined rebalancing
- Increased tax efficiency and reduced trading costs
- More comprehensive reporting of returns and portfolio history
We can enhance what we do for you by bringing your employer retirement plan onto our Merriman web portal. This allows us to monitor your total portfolio allocation on a daily basis. By using the best of what’s available in your retirement plan and augmenting it with the accounts Merriman manages, we can estimate a net-of-fee performance improvement annually that’s specific to your situation. In many cases, there may be just two to five funds utilized in your retirement plan.
If you have a taxable account, we can move the international holdings into it, so you may be able to deduct the foreign taxes that are withheld, and place the less tax-efficient investments, like REITs, Reinsurance and Marketplace Lending, in your IRAs.
We suggest speaking with your advisor about how to incorporate your employer retirement plans into your overall investment allocation.