Mercer Wise 401(k),SM a holistic, open architecture plan, designed to enhance quality and transparency for 401(k)s
Mercer, a global consulting leader in advancing health, wealth and careers, and a wholly-owned subsidiary of Marsh & McLennan Companies (NYSE: MMC), today announced the launch of Mercer Wise 401(k)SM, a holistic retirement savings solution designed to mitigate plan sponsors’ fiduciary risk while lowering participants' costs by leveraging Mercer’s global scale across the 401(k) value chain . Mercer will serve as the ERISA “plan administrator” and “named fiduciary” for each plan, taking responsibility for most of the administrative and operating functions that many plan sponsors find troublesome and difficult to govern, as well as responsibility for investment decisions within each plan. Utilizing its global manager research, Mercer will select independent investment managers across a range of asset classes.
This comprehensive and transparent fiduciary solution is intended to reduce costs for participating plans while providing those plan sponsors with access to professionals with experience in managing risks and promoting better outcomes for plan participants.
“We believe that segments of the 401(k) marketplace suffer from high fees and lack of transparency, among other challenges. Against this background, plan sponsors face an increasingly difficult regulatory environment, increased litigation risk and heightened demand on their limited resources to support their 401(k).” said Tom Murphy, Senior Partner, Mercer. “By assuming the responsibilities of named fiduciary, Mercer can reduce risks for plan sponsors, who may be challenged in meeting an ever increasing burden. We will leverage our global research and investment expertise and use our economies of scale to provide transparency, cost reductions and improved services.”
Recognizing that retirement plans are just one component of an individual’s overall financial wellbeing, participants in Mercer Wise 401(k),SM will have complete access to Mercer Financial Wellness, an open architecture financial wellness platform that includes access to online budgeting tools, credit-score monitoring, a robo-advice solution, student loan refinancing and other services provided through third-party providers.
Mercer Wise 401(k)SM offers its clients features including but not limited to:
Taking ownership of many of the fiduciary responsibilities of plan sponsors.
Offering participants access to high-quality institutional investment solutions developed by Mercer’s global research team by engaging independent investment managers.
Assuming responsibility for plan administration and meeting certain regulatory requirements, such as Form 5500 filings and non-discrimination testing.
“We want to be a positive part of getting the US retirement system to work for everyone.” Said Mr. Murphy, Mercer. “We believe that Mercer Wise 401(k)SM is a true disruptor in the market place and will greatly benefit both plan participants and plan sponsors.”
Mercer will be hosting a webinar to discuss companies’ challenges of managing retirement plans. The webinar will be held on Wednesday, September 28, 2016 from 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm EDT. Topics include complex rules and regulations; picking investment options; responding to employees; tracking eligibility, participant loans, beneficiaries among other issues. Click here to register.
Click here for infographic, which provides additional detail.
Mercer Wise 401(k) services are provided by Mercer Investment Management, Inc., which together with its affiliates (“Mercer”) is a global consulting leader in talent, health, retirement and investments. Mercer helps clients around the world advance the health, wealth and careers of their most vital asset – their people. Mercer’s more than 20,000 employees are based in 43 countries and the firm operates in over 140 countries. Mercer is a wholly owned subsidiary of Marsh & McLennan Companies (NYSE: MMC), a global professional services firm offering clients advice and solutions in the areas of risk, strategy and people. With annual revenue of $13 billion and 60,000 colleagues worldwide, Marsh & McLennan Companies is also the parent company of Marsh, a leader in insurance broking and risk management; Guy Carpenter, a leader in providing risk and reinsurance intermediary services; and Oliver Wyman, a leader in management consulting. For more information, visit www.mercer.com. Follow Mercer on Twitter @Mercer.
References to Mercer shall be construed to include Mercer LLC and/or its associated companies.
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Mercer Investment Management, Inc. and Mercer Investment Consulting LLC are federally registered investment advisers under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, as amended. Registration as an investment adviser does not imply a certain level of skill or training. Mercer’s Form ADV Part 2A & 2B can be obtained by written request directed to: Compliance Department, Mercer Investments, 701 Market Street, Suite 1100, St. Louis, MO 63101.
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