Tuesday, March 27, 2012

BofA offers 401(k) for small businesses

Bank of America has introduced a new 401(k) program for small businesses. The Merrill Edge Small Business 401(k) costs less than many traditional plans, the bank said, allowing more business owners to set up retirement plans or provide the benefit to employees.

Most companies with less than 100 employees don't offer retirement plans, citing complexity, administrative burdens and cost as barriers, the bank said. Yet a recent Bank of America Merrill Lynch workplace benefits report found more than half of small business owners called retirement benefits a top tool for attracting and retaining employees.

The Merrill Edge Small Business 401(k) is self-serviced and managed online. The program also features web-based administration services, a streamlined investment menu and a platform for employees to manage their retirement investments.

Merrill Edge offers investment guidance and investing platforms for small businesses and "mass affluent" customers, those with between $50,000 and $250,000 in investable assets.