Asset Categories Descriptions

When you enroll in Savings Plus, you will need to choose funds to invest in. Funds are grouped by asset categories, which identify funds that tend to have similar investment objectives and strategies. Funds within asset categories generally react in a similar manner to market fluctuations as other funds in the same class.

Spreading your investment selections across several asset categories, a technique known as diversification, can help increase your total return based on the level of risk you are willing to accept. However, as with any investing strategy, the use of diversification and asset allocation does not assure a profit or protect against loss in a declining market. Read more about investment strategies in the Learning Center.

Category types

Savings Plus offers a broad spectrum of assets categories. These descriptions are provided to help you learn more about the differences among categories. You can visit the fund performance table to learn more about their performance over time.

  1. Target Date Funds offer a diversified mix of investments that becomes more conservative as the fund approaches a specified date. Instead of choosing a fund based on risk (such as conservative or aggressive), you choose one fund based on the time frame in which you expect to begin withdrawing from your account.
  2. International Funds select from non-U.S. equity securities. Generally, any fund that invests no more than 49% in U.S. markets is classified as International Stock. International stocks may also include World Stock funds, Diversified Emerging Markets funds, and regional foreign stock funds.
  3. Small Cap Funds invest primarily in shares of smaller, lesser-known corporations, and have a market capitalization (valuations) of less than $1.6 billion. Small company stocks may have a higher growth potential than Large or Mid Cap Stock funds, but also are more volatile and may fail more often.
  4. Mid Cap Funds invest primarily in the stocks of mid-size corporations and have a market capitalization (valuations) greater than $1.6 billion and less than $10 billion.
  5. Large Cap Funds invest in the largest domestic equity companies and generally have a market capitalization (valuations) greater than $10 billion. They are the larger, more established, profitable and well-known companies.
  6. Diversified Real Return Funds are made up of assets from three classes: Treasury Inflation Protected Securities, US Real Estate Investment Trusts and globally traded commodities. These three asset categories comprising the composite historically have had low correlation with one another. That is, they tend to move independently of each other.
  7. Balanced generally have a three-part investment objective: 1) to conserve investors’ initial principal, 2) to pay current income and 3) to promote long-term growth. Balanced funds typically invest in bonds and the remainder in stocks, and tend to be conservative or moderate.
  8. Bond Funds invest, as the name suggests, in bonds, which are debt securities issued by a corporation, the U.S. Government, or a governmental agency. Essentially, a bond represents a loan to the issuer. The issuer guarantees to repay the loan by a specific date and to pay regular, fixed interest payments during that period.
  9. Short Term Investments generally do not fluctuate in market value and yield regular interest payments. Assets may be placed in bank deposits, money market instruments, U.S. Treasury Bills, Guaranteed Investment Contracts (GICs), stable value funds, short term bonds, and/or fixed annuity products offered by insurance companies.

Savings Plus offers a series of Core Investment Fund offerings, as well as Target Date Funds, to help you meet your investment objectives.


Get the help you need

Questions? Talk with a Retirement Specialist for more information about the specific asset classes and funds available as part of your employer’s plan. Information provided by Retirement Specialists is for educational purposes only and is not intended as investment advice.

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