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An Even Easier Way to Invest for Retirement

What’s Changing and Why

Today, more than 4 out of 5 plan members invest in balanced funds, which offer a static mix of stocks and bonds in a single diversified fund, based on desired level of risk. While balanced funds have performed well for decades, we recognize that not everyone devotes time to understanding their tolerance for risk. Our research shows an opportunity to help guide plan members to a suitable asset mix by adjusting it systematically for them, over time.

To make it even easier to invest for retirement, we’re replacing today’s Select Series balanced funds with target date funds. Target date funds are designed to help members invest appropriately over their lifetime, based on risk tolerance as they age. They’re managed by investment professionals who adjust the mix of asset classes over time to suit members’ investment risk needs.

Do-it-yourselfers can continue to customize their account using our Build-Your-Own Series. To simplify the options and eliminate duplication, two funds will be removed: the ELCA U.S. Stock Fund and ELCA Social Purpose U.S. Stock Fund.

We believe target date funds will be a great enhancement to our fund lineup. They offer an industry best practice of changing your equity exposure as you age, while keeping the same underlying investments that have performed so well for our community.

— Josh Smith, Senior Director of Products

What Happens Next

  • Review Current Fund Selections

    Members can sign into myPortico to view their investment funds.

  • Optional: Make Changes by 3 p.m. (Central) Oct. 1, 2020

    If members have assets in any of the removed funds and do not want them automatically transferred, they can move their assets to the remaining build-your-own funds.

  • No Account Activity Oct. 2 – 4 and Oct. 9 – 11, 2020

    Members will not be able to make withdrawals, contribute, or change their investment selections during this time. Also, our online Retirement Planning Tool will be unavailable Sept. 30 – Oct. 14.

  • New Fund Lineup Oct. 12, 2020

    Members can see their new investment fund selections and choose from 34 available options.

What is a Target Date Fund?

It’s a single investment fund that contains a diversified mix of stocks and bonds, managed by professionals, who adjust the mix over time to become more conservative as members near retirement.

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How Target Date Funds Make Investing Easier

Diversified: Like today’s Select Series balanced funds, target date funds provide a broad mix of asset classes within a single fund. Diversification is important because it can help reduce risk. Portico target date funds are rebalanced every six months to maintain their intended mix of stocks and bonds.

Adjusted Over Time: Target date funds offer a unique benefit known as a “glide path,” a formula that adjusts the fund’s asset mix gradually over time. It seeks more aggressive growth earlier in a member’s lifetime and become more conservative as the member nears retirement. Whereas today’s 40e, 60e, and 80e balanced funds offer a static mix of asset classes, target date funds systematically adjust this mix to suit investment risk over time.

Supporting Retirement Goals

Designed for the ELCA Community

Portico continues a 200+ year Lutheran legacy of compassion, providing a church-sponsored retirement plan — so members can reach their financial goals and retire with confidence.

With the ELCA Retirement Plan, members can:

  • Pick funds that reflect their investment priorities, how involved they want to be, and the level of social impact they want to have.
  • Change their investment selections for their existing balance and/or new contributions any normal business day.
  • Grow their savings by making pretax contributions, coupled with generous employer contributions.
  • Talk with a Portico Financial Planner at no additional cost, for help making the best investment decisions for their circumstances — today and through retirement.
  • Build a personalized plan using Portico’s exclusive Retirement Planning Tool, which preloads their account details.
  • Claim the housing allowance exclusion on distributions, if clergy.
  • Avoid sales commissions and profit margins, thanks to Portico’s nonprofit ministry focus.
  • Use online retirement planning tools on our recordkeeper, Fidelity’s, NetBenefits® site.

Unique Social Purpose Option

Portico social purpose funds offer the opportunity to invest in alignment with ELCA social teachings and policies. These funds seek to create positive impact in the world today, while striving to provide attractive long-term investment performance to help members save for tomorrow.

As investment manager for the ELCA Retirement Plan, we’ve heard from members who want the choice to invest in social purpose funds. To make that choice easy, the social purpose target date funds will be the default investment for new members who join the plan, effective Oct. 2, 2020. We encourage current members to consider whether they wish to invest a portion of their assets in social purpose funds.

Members: Learn more about social purpose funds

Employers: Learn more about social purpose funds