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  1. Thanks Tony, EdLaFave and MoeMoney. Here is the link to the presentation. Here is the link to the comparison document. The first page links to the New York Times articles and some other resources including the solvency of our pension system. The second page has the comparison. The third page has a picture of my allocation the AXA rep had me in. The point is to prove that others likely have the same allocation (or something similar) yet we are led to believe that an allocation has been specifically tailored to our needs. I have a similar comparison and picture I created for Voya (my wife had Voya). Hope you find it useful. Please let me know what you think. 457b AXA for 403bwise.pdf Financial Wellness for 403bwise.pdf
  2. Thank you for the direction and guidance. I’ve read a lot here and posted sparingly. I’ve listened to every podcast and heeded much of the advice and wisdom. Over the last couple years I’ve increasingly been fortunate to establish a relationship with teachers, administrators and central office accounting staff in my district. Within that time our district moved to Omni as our third party administrator. This move led to the loss of Fidelity as a 403b and 457b offering. Our current 403b providers include: Ameriprise, Aspire, AXA, Brighthouse (Metlife), Oppenheimer, Security Benefit, Thrivent Financial, VALIC and Voya. Only Ameriprise and Voya remained as our 457b provider. My most recent staff survey indicated an impressive 66% of staff invest in a 403b. Unfortunately, 55% of those staff members have AXA as their provider (they’re the ones that put the papers in our mailboxes and pester us in the teacher’s lounge- I too had them before I came to the light). I’ve taken some time to educate all staff on the cost of investing in high fee providers. Concurrently, I’ve been able to push for the district to move to the state’s 457b provider. This only recently has become an option in our state for local school districts. It is a fantastic plan with an administrative fee of .046% annually and investment options including Vanguard S&P Index Institutional (.02%), T. Rowe Price Large Cap Growth (.06%), Vanguard Mid Cap Institutional (.05%), TIAA-CREF Small Cap Index (.06%), TIAA-CREF International Index Institutional (.06%). I’ve been fortunate to have been given a platform to educate staff on the benefits of investing in a low cost provider. Comparison documents have been created and shared between AXA and lower cost providers and I’ve led professional development and presented to the teachers' union and administrators. This summer our board of education voted to approve a board resolution that replaced Voya and Ameriprise with our state’s 457b. Teachers are excited and I’m encouraged that positive change is taking place. Thank you for all the direction and support!
  3. Thank you EdLaFave, that's what I found as well. Does that fee guarantee that you will get back what you put in to your investment? If you've invested a certain amount and the stock market goes below that amount do these fees insure that if you die your beneficiaries will receive the amount that you contributed? Thank you.
  4. Can anyone explain what the mortality and expense fees are for in a 403b account? What do they provide? I'm asking specifically about the 1.20% fee charged by AXA or the 0.75% fee charged by Voya. Thank you for your time, I'm working to put together some PD on retirement planning for colleagues.
  5. Thanks Krow for verifying. I really appreciate it.
  6. Below is an email all teachers in my district just received. It did have a name, lengthy signature and contact information. It is signed "NEA Retirement Specialist- Security Benefit." Am I correct to assume that this is an insurance agent through Security Benefit who hopes to sell high fee annuity products? How do you suggest I respond to teachers in the district that have asked for my advice regarding regarding this representative? I hope this note finds you in great spirits. I am the NEA Retirement Specialist the district and I will be meeting with faculty and staff throughout the coming months. I want to offer you the opportunity to meet and review retirement ideas and financial planning strategies that pertain to teachers and their pension/social security benefits. The 403b program is one of many retirement accounts that offer tax benefits, and investment options. I encourage you to schedule a meeting to review the options available in the district. Objectivity is important. I am always available by email or phone. If you have any questions I suggest we set a date and time to get together. I look forward to hearing from you soon. Sincerely, ________________________ Investment Advisor Representative Medallion Wealth Advisors, LLC NEA Retirement Specialist - Security Benefit
  7. It is a goal of mine to educate others in my district and get them to move out of AXA. I'm in the process of putting together some resources and planning a workshop. Thanks for the help over the past months.
  8. Update on my end. Security Benefit never worked out. I had moved to open an account at Aspire after having many discussions with my district's accounting office... then, right as my first salary reduction was scheduled to be sent to Aspire my district released a new authorized provider letter. Fidelity was a new (random) addition on the list. I opened an account with Fidelity using all incredibly cheap index funds and the rest is history. I think the poking around and question asking may have helped.
  9. PEteacher


    I recently called AXA corporate office to learn about fees on my account and surrender fees. I was paying 1.15% M and E and on average the mutual funds in my account were around 1.15%. My expense ratio was at 2.3%! Unreal. Surrender fees on my account are at 5%. I'm just going to bite the bullet and move everything to my new account with Aspire once it is all set up. I suggest you do the same and move it all to Vanguard.
  10. I have done a bit of reading but wouldn't mind your thoughts on my asset allocation. 70% Vanguard Total Stock Market Index- .16% fee 20% Vanguard Total International Stock Market Index- .19% 10% Vanguard Small Cap Index-.20% I do realize I'm duplicating 10% of my portfolio in small cap stocks. I'm hoping to tilt slightly to small caps. I'm at least 20-25 years away from retirement. Thank you.
  11. Perfect, thank you Tony! Aspire charges .15% plus a $40 annual fee which is very low. I was only concerned when I saw the word VOYA.
  12. I'm reaching out to ask for a little help or confidence that I am making the right decision regarding a provider. I originally enrolled in an AXA 403b. Recently, I have stopped my contributions. Back in December of 2015 I began the application process to enroll in the Security Benefit Direct Invest program. I was not successful for a number of reasons. You can find my post about that in two different threads. I've now completed an application to enroll in a program through Aspire. Is this the best option for me? Here are my district's offerings: VOYA Equitable AXA Oppenheimer Ameriprise Commonwealth Benefit Pacific Life Met Life Security Benefit- big time fail. Thrivent Financial AIG 403(b) ASP Fundsource- now referred to as Aspire One additional question. The Aspire website states that VOYA is my districts third party administrator for this program. Do you suspect there will be additional fees I will have to pay VOYA? Thank you!
  13. Just want to give a quick update of my progress (or lack of) regarding Security Benefit's Direct Invest program. I originally started my application in December of 2015. I went back and forth between Security Benefit and my payroll office to try to establish this account for months. I most recently had a meeting with payroll and discovered that Security Benefit was asking for information that my district wasn't familiar with. Specifically, Security Benefit was asking for an "Employer Adoption Agreement." Security Benefit also stated that a potential hold up was due to our third party administrator- Plan with Ease. I've moved on and I'm in the process of filling out an application with Aspire. I wish I was able to see this through so I could assist others who are attempting to enroll in Security Benefit's Direct Invest program. I hope the Aspire enrollment is far less complicated.
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