Pacific Life Takes Aim at the Micro 401k Market
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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Pacific Life Takes Aim at the Micro 401k Market

As reported by The's sister publication The (see The 401k Wire 09/28/2010 ) yesterday, Pacific Life has taken the wraps off a micro market 401(k) product.

Called Keystone Program, the product combines Portfolio Optimization Funds, offered through Pacific Life Funds, and Ascensus, a retirement plan service provider.

Reed Lloyd, assistant vice president, advanced marketing, in Pacific Life's retirement solutions division, said in an interview that his firm entered the micro market (it defines micro as small plans with assets between $5 million and $10 million) with full fee disclosure in mind.

"With pending 408(b)(2) regulations, we believe the small businesses will become more educated as to the fees being paid by the plan and its participants," he said. "Pacific Life's Keystone program was designed with 408(b)(2) in mind with fees for recordkeeping and investments being transparent."

Reed also said that the Pacific Life target-risk funds are the core investments within the program. "Our research has shown that participants in the micro and small market can become overwhelmed with the number of investment options available within a retirement plan; thus, we feel that Pacific Life’s target-risk funds can provide diversification while matching a participants risk tolerance, all within one mutual fund."

Ascensus and Pacific Life Join Forces to Deliver New 401(k) Solution DRESHER, Pa.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Ascensus and Pacific Life have teamed up to offer a new program to address the needs of small business retirement plan sponsors—fee disclosure, diversified investment options, and cost-effectiveness. The Pacific Life Keystone Program combines the strengths of the Portfolio Optimization Funds, offered through Pacific Life Funds, and Ascensus, Inc., a leading retirement plan service provider, to provide an employer-sponsored 401(k) plan for small businesses.

“Through this relationship, Ascensus and Pacific Life have developed a powerful retirement plan solution. Small businesses will benefit from the combination of our proven industry expertise, high-quality investment options and tailored approach,” states Mike Narkoff, senior vice president, Sales at Ascensus.

“We are committed to providing financial professionals with the tools and training they need to help their clients. Together, our goal is to make it easy for employers to implement a workplace retirement plan for employees. The Keystone Program offers a straightforward option for small business owners and is a great complement to our existing lineup of employer-sponsored plan solutions,” said Christine Tucker, vice president of marketing, Pacific Life, Retirement Solutions Division.

The Keystone Program provides fee transparency, investment flexibility, and a simplified implementation process. The program offers access to Portfolio Optimization Funds—five target-risk funds that range from conservative to aggressive. In addition, plan sponsors may choose from a variety of other investment options to ensure that they receive a plan tailored to the individual needs of their participants.

About Ascensus

With more than 30 years of industry experience, Ascensus delivers high-quality solutions for every segment of the retirement plan marketplace. A division of Crump Group, Inc., a leading provider of retirement services and the largest, most diversified wholesale insurance distributor in the U.S., Ascensus services nearly 27,000 defined contribution plans in the micro to large markets and administers over 1.5 million IRAs. Core capabilities include ERISA consulting, compliance support, sales, trust services, multilingual participant education, training and documentation. Solutions are offered with open architecture investment capabilities tailored to the needs of institutional partners, third party administrators, financial advisors, plan sponsors and participants. Learn more at

About Pacific Life

Offering insurance since 1868, Pacific Life provides a wide range of life insurance products, annuities, and mutual funds, and offers a variety of investment products and services to individuals, businesses, and pension plans. Pacific Life also counts more than half of the 100 largest U.S. companies as its clients.1 For additional company information, including current financial strength ratings, visit Pacific Life online at

1Pacific Life refers to Pacific Life Insurance Company and its affiliates, including Pacific Life & Annuity Company. Client count as of April 2010 is compiled by Pacific Life using the 2010 FORTUNE 500® list.

You should carefully consider an investment’s objectives, risks, charges, limitations, and expenses. This and other information about Pacific Life Funds are in the prospectus available from your registered representative or by calling (800) 722-2333, option 2. Read the prospectus carefully before investing.

Portfolio Optimization Funds are exposed to the same risks as the underlying funds in direct proportion to the allocation of assets among those funds. Asset allocation does not guarantee future results, ensure a profit, or protect against loss. Investment in an individual fund or funds in a single asset class may outperform or underperform an asset allocation fund. Values will fluctuate, and when redeemed, the shares may be worth more or less than the original cost.

Pacific Life offers the Keystone Program and offers the Portfolio Optimization Funds through Pacific Life Funds. Pacific Life, Pacific Select Distributors, and Pacific Life Funds are not affiliated with Ascensus and do not provide any employer-sponsored qualified plan administrative services. Ascensus provides administrative and recordkeeping services and is not a broker/dealer or investment advisor.

Please contact your plan administrator for any questions relating to your employer-sponsored plan. For information regarding administrative and recordkeeping services for the Pacific Life Keystone Program, call Ascensus, Inc., at (800) 345-6363.

Ascensus® and the Ascensus logo are registered trademarks of Ascensus, Inc. All rights reserved.

Portfolio Optimization Funds are offered by Pacific Life Funds. Pacific Life Funds are distributed by Pacific Select Distributors, Inc. (member FINRA & SIPC), a subsidiary of Pacific Life Insurance Company (Newport Beach, CA), and are available through licensed third-party broker/dealers.

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