Just as states are jumping in to fill the retirement plan coverage gap, a non-profit organization has announced the launch of a universal retirement plan.
National Association of Retirement Plan Participants (NARPP) will
launch Icon in 2017, a universal retirement plan designed to help the 75
million working Americans who do not have access to an
employer-sponsored retirement plan. Icon integrates the best aspects of
large employer-sponsored plans—such as low fees and simplified
choices—along with complete portability and a well-designed user
interface, the firm says.
NARPP has been working with some of the
most respected industry experts, behavioral finance academics and
designers to develop the first offering on the Icon platform—a “Smarter
IRA” that will voluntarily default people into a target-date fund (TDF)
that is based on the saver’s age. NARPP has negotiated with asset
managers to provide institutional pricing, which means people using Icon
will pay significantly less than average retail fees on an IRA.
offers behaviorally effective communications that lead to increased
levels of trust, deeper engagement and increased savings rates. Icon is a
sustainable and scalable offering that makes it easier to save more,
making it more likely that people will be better prepared for
Icon has been designed for independent contractors and ‘gig workers,’
people who work for an employer that doesn’t offer a plan, as well as
employers who don’t offer a plan but want to help their employees save
for retirement. With a five-dollar per month membership fee, people will
have access to an experience that provides enhanced features such as
personalized information, curated and unbiased financial information, a
community of mentors and peers, live education events, and access to
Icon. The membership fee can be paid by the individual or by employers
on behalf of their employees.
“Icon represents a new model—it is
the first fully comprehensive retirement savings system,” according to
Warren Cormier of NARPP. “Icon encompasses all major components of a
successful retirement journey—accumulation, portability, quality and
transparency, along with fairly priced funds and behaviorally effective
communications that motivate people to save.”
More about NARPP can be found at www.NARPP.org.