Research summary

Professional portfolio management paves the way for participant well-being

July 06, 2022

Bar chart shows the percentage of Vanguard defined contribution plan participants using a managed account program, holding a single target-risk or traditional balanced fund, or holding a single target-date fund for each year from 2012 through 2021. The percentage of participants holding a single target-date fund increased from 27% in 2012 to 56% in 2021, while the percentage holding a single target-risk or traditional balanced fund declined from 6% to 1% and the percentage using a managed account program grew from 3% to 7%.
Line chart shows trends in asset allocation by participant age during four years: 2005, 2010, 2015, and 2021. In 2005, younger participants [(those age 25 or under)], held less than 60% in equities and, in peak-equity years (35–44), never reached 75%. The equity allocation bottomed around 40% at age 70+. In 2010, investors aged 25 and younger held an equity allocation greater than 80%; that number trended downward throughout the age cohorts, bottoming at around 40% at age 70+. In both 2015 and 2021, equity allocations for those under age 25 around 90%, remaining elevated through a good part of middle age, then bottoming out at slightly more than 40% at age 70+.


Jeff Clark
Vanguard Information and Insights

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