High Cost of 401K Accounts

I was excited to see the annual 401K statement from one of my former employers had arrived. I was expecting a high return on my current investment, just like last year.

Sure enough, the return was exponential. I smiled, but the smile soon turned into deep laughter.

I had earned $.01 during the past year, and my total balance was a staggering $.03. Not bad. I wish I could get those kinds of returns on all my accounts.

Three years ago, when I was laid off from said pristine company, I transferred all the funds to another account. Evidently a penny was missed, and it has been slowly starting a family.

I thought of the cost of generating and sending the statement to me, and how the company that services the 401K is losing money on me. I thought about calling them and asking them to issue me a check, but why go through all that trouble? It’s their problem. After all, my investment is growing.

The question is: Why don’t they have a low balance trigger that flags these sorts of issues? It probably doesn’t happen that often, but how would the company know? Why should I tell them?

I’m curious to see how much my money will grow over the years, and whether the company will ever realize the problem. The funniest part?

60% of the money is invested in stocks and 40% in bonds. I’ve heard of penny stocks, but penny bonds? Go figure.

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[This was resolved in 401K Woes Resolved]

2 Comments

Filed under Humor/Irony

2 responses to “High Cost of 401K Accounts

  1. Deep joy – I think their fundamental problem might be a deficiency of IT auditors. That is, in fact, the fundamental problem with most organisations as far as my experience goes.
    I once took on a personal crusade against junk mail by returning every reply-paid envelope (without filling in any information) hoping that the perpetrators would see the impact on their bottom line of all those wasted 50c postage fees. But I expect they have a materiality factor in prioritising which problems they fix, and it didn’t make the cut. Probably like your issue, if its costing them a few hundred or thousand bucks a month, probably not a good investment of time to resolve.
    Nice post, sorry I’ve been out of touch for a while.

    Like

  2. Cow,
    I’ve returned junk mail too, but I doubt that kind of stuff ever makes it back to the people who could do something. The people opening the mail probably just bemoan the idiots who mailed it.
    Good to have you back!

    Like

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