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  1. Hi, I just went to a district sponsored meeting during our professional development days in Santa Barbara, California and now I'm super confused. The workshop was lead by a rep from Planmember Services, and when I brought up the fact that CalStrs Pension2 is a low-fee option for a 403b plan, he said it was an annuity, and that they charged M & E expenses in addition to fund expenses. (He had earlier indicated displeasure in general with annuities.) I wanted the other teachers in the room to know that Pension2 was a low-fee option, but he definitely seemed to downplay it, and cast it as an annuity that charged both insurance fees and fund fees. When I approached him after the meeting to say that I wasn't being charged M & E fees, he said that the administrative fees of .25 a year were essentially M & E fees, and that Voya was an insurance company, thus the product was an annuity, or at least, LIKE an annuity. I have my 403b Pension2 contributions mostly in Vanguard mutual funds with some bond and inflation-protected securities. I know other teachers have invested with this particular rep in Planmember services and they're being charged 1.75 to 2% a year in fees. Our district lets him run workshops and come to faculty meetings on a regular basis. What do I need to know, and what am I misinformed about? Do I indeed have an annuity, and is that something I should question? Would it be better for me to go straight to Vanguard instead of using Pension2 (they are on my district's list of vendors, as are most of the products I'm invested in). Thank you for your help.
  2. Hello, again. Despite my dislike of Pension2's forced liquidation of my long term investments, I didn't manage to switch to another provider, so now my re-allocated funds are with Voya, except for a chunk that stayed in TIAA-Cref's traditional account. My question is about the Voya stable value option--looking over their statements about that fund, I remain unclear about what degree of flexibility one has with that investment. They seem to place more restrictions on moving the money than TIAA-Cref does, but it seems ambiguous what, exactly, the restrictions are. Would someone (Scotty D?) be kind enough to spell out what their policies/restrictions are if one wants to move money out of the stable value fund in order to reinvest in a different fund? If there are restrictions about pulling the money out in retirement, I'd like to be clear on that, too. Thanks.
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