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Building a Better 401(k) with Betterment for Business

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Online investment advisory innovator Betterment announced its new, turnkey 401(k) service, Betterment for Business. It is designed to give employees the same inexpensive, personalized investment advice Betterment currently provides to its more than 125,000 customers.

“No matter how low-cost the funds, typical plans do not ensure solid retirement readiness,” wrote Jon Stein, Betterment’s founder and CEO, in an extensive blog post about the launch. “They offer little guidance, are hard to navigate, and aren’t personalized to the employee’s circumstances and goals.”

“We wanted to do something better.”

 

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Betterment for Business, like Betterment’s original service, focuses on reducing fees and providing more tailored investment solutions. Calling high 401(k) fees a product of both inefficiency and conflicts of interest, Betterment for Business  compares itself to low-cost providers such as Vanguard. And because Betterment is independent, it has no incentive to use any particular fund or ETF in its portfolios. “We can be a true fiduciary to our customers,” Stein explained.

Betterment for Business also offers the RetireGuide, which lets workers know how much money to save for retirement based on geography, marital status, planned retirement location, current income and savings, and more. The RetireGuide reviews what workers are currently invested in with their 401(k) plans and makes recommendations on other investments that may be worthwhile.

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“Using vertical integration,” Stein said, “we can give holistic, unconflicted advice to employees about savings rates, account types, and investment selection, while also reducing costs and inefficiencies.”

Betterment for Business is scheduled to be available in the first quarter of 2016.

Recently featured in both the EconoTimes and Let’s Talk Payments, Betterment earned a spot in the Forbes Fintech 50 in December, and topped $3 billion in assets in November. Betterment founder and CEO Jon Stein was recognized by Hot Topics as one of the “100 Most Influential People in Fintech” back in August.

Founded in August 2008 and headquartered in New York, Betterment demonstrated its the Multiple Goals Feature of its platform at FinovateFall 2011.