MassMutual Sees Participants Return to Equities

The largest proportion of participant assets in plans administered by MassMutual's Retirement Services Division is in equities (38.7%) versus stable value options (31.7%) during the second quarter of 2009.

A MassMutual news release said the data represents a reversal from the first quarter, during which 36.3% of assets were in stable value compared to 35.1% in the equity markets. Assets in asset allocation options also continued to increase gradually during the second quarter, now representing almost 22% of total assets.

In addition, MassMutual said its call center volume has normalized after two consecutive quarters of increased activity. While calls regarding loans have increased by approximately three percentage points to 11%, only 0.24% of participants actually initiated a loan.

The data also showed that older participants are saving, on average, three percentage points more than participants under age 30. More than 90% of participants made no changes to their savings rate in the second quarter 2009, while 2.1% of participants actually increased their deferral rate.

A lower percentage (19%) of participants made a change to their asset allocation in the second quarter, compared with 25% in the first quarter and 20% in the fourth quarter of 2008.

MassMutual also reported that its participant education Web site, RetireSmart Academy, has seen a 29% increase in activity, with most of the site’s visitors reviewing the accumulation-stage material rather than pre-retiree or retiree material.