Equitable Adds Managed Accounts and Cash Balance Solution to Retirement Plans
Adds to Robust Suite of Financial Services Supporting Small and Medium-Sized Business Owners; Research Shows Retirement Remains a Priority for Business Owners and Their Employees
July 1, 2021
NEW YORK – July 1, 2021 – Equitable, a leading financial services organization and principal franchise of Equitable Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: EQH), today announced the addition of customized managed accounts and a cash balance plan to its group retirement plans for small-to-medium sized businesses. These additional services will allow business owners and their employees to further tailor their investment portfolios and plan design to help them reach their goals.
Managed accounts provide an option for people looking for guidance in creating retirement plan allocations, with a customized portfolio for each plan participant based on their current age, location, contribution rate, marital status, gender, and balance, and then can be further personalized by the participant online. As a result, they can be much more tailored than other qualified default investment alternatives (QDIAs). This customization can be beneficial to helping retirement savers achieve their goals.
Cash balance plans can allow business owners to lower their tax burden, accelerate retirement savings and save more for retirement.
“Despite the fact that small businesses are facing one of the most challenging periods in recent history given the COVID-19 pandemic, small business owners aren’t giving up their dreams of financial stability and a comfortable retirement for themselves and their employees,” said Jessica Baehr, head of Group Retirement, Equitable. “Extending increased customization and personalization in their 401(k) plans, along with advice and a full suite of employee benefits solutions is important to helping small business owners and their employees weather uncertainty and plan for their financial futures.”
Research conducted by Equitable in late 2020 showed that small-to-medium sized business owners and their employees continue to prioritize saving for retirement despite hardship caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. While almost 40% of small businesses have reported loss of income due to the pandemic, the survey showed that only 12% have stopped or lowered their retirement contributions and only 2% pulled money out of the markets.
Survey respondents also expressed knowing that their future retirement is secure would be a great stress relief. Almost 90% of small business owners want to preserve the current value of their investments and 70% want to identify opportunities to grow their investments.
“Small businesses employ half of the US workforce. They are an important part of the fabric of our communities and are vital to our economy,” continued Baehr. “With so many of these businesses facing uncertain futures due to the impact of COVID-19, we are committed to delivering the expertise, technology and intuitive solutions our small and mid-sized business clients need to keep their businesses going and help them and their employees continue to plan for their financial futures.”
The new managed account will be provided through Stadion Money Management, an investment management firm and 3(38) participant level fiduciary also approved by both institutional plan level fiduciary partners, Wilshire and SWBC. There are no minimum account balances for either plans or their participants.
Equitable supports small businesses through a robust suite of strategies customizable to the unique needs of both the business owner and its employees, including employer-sponsored and individual life insurance, annuities, dental and vision insurance plans, short and long-term disability income insurance and 401(k) plans.
Equitable has also expanded its suite of offerings to include growth-focused investment and tax-advantaged income planning for business owners. Earlier this year the company integrated an innovative technology platform developed by Corporate & Endowment Solutions, Inc. (CES). The addition of CES will enable small businesses to provide customized strategies to manage a full range of employee benefits offerings, integral to acquiring and retaining top talent.
Equitable, a principal franchise of Equitable Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: EQH), has been one of America’s leading financial services providers since 1859. With the mission to help clients secure their financial well-being, Equitable provides advice, protection and retirement strategies to individuals, families and small businesses. Equitable has more than 8,000 employees and Equitable Advisors financial professionals and serves 2.8 million clients across the country. Please visit equitable.com for more information. Reference to the 1859 founding applies specifically and exclusively to Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company.
Stadion Money Management, LLC (“Stadion”), an independent investment adviser registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission provides investment advice and account management services. Stadion is not a subsidiary of Equitable Holdings, Inc. Investments are subject to risk, and any of Stadion’s investment strategies may lose money.
Corporate and Endowment Solutions (CES), including its administration services arm, CES Administration (CESA), is a division of Equitable, which is the brand name of the retirement and protection subsidiaries of Equitable Holdings, Inc., including Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company (Equitable Financial) (NY, NY) and Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company of America (Equitable America), an AZ stock company with main administrative headquarters in Jersey City, NJ, issuers of annuity and life insurance products; and Equitable Distributors, LLC. Equitable Advisors is the brand name of Equitable Advisors, LLC (member FINRA, SIPC) (Equitable Financial Advisors in MI & TN).
Wilshire Advisors LLC is an investment advisor fiduciary under ERISA 3(21) responsible for recommending the glide path manager, GLWB providers, underlying fund products and stable value offerings to the trustee from an investment universe selected by the product consultant for each category. SWBC Retirement Plan Services is an unaffiliated third-party and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of SWBC, which was established in 1976. Advisory services are offered by SWBC Investment Advisory Services, LLC, d/b/a SWBC Retirement Plan Services, a Registered Investment Advisor with the Securities and Exchange Commission.