SunTrust Banks has taken a jab at making retirement planning easier for participants in the 401(k) plans of its institutional clients.

The Atlanta-based banking organization has added new retirement income projection tools that it says enhances the ability of plan participants to make more informed decisions around retirement planning.

The tools were developed to help plan participants take stock of their retirement readiness and compel them to take action given the “woefully low” number of people on track to a secure retirement, Mark A. Jones, director of sales and client service for SunTrust Employee Benefit Solutions, said in a telephone interview.

“Every time someone logs on, they’re presented with a stark indication of what their retirement security is going to be if they continue on the path that they’re on,” Jones said.

One of the tools provides 401(k) participants with a quick calculation of their estimated projected monthly income amount at retirement, using real-time account data from the recordkeeping system. The tool provides the projection without having to enter any data into a calculator, according to SunTrust.

Another tool enables employees to “dig deeper” by including income from Social Security, pensions and other outside assets into the projected monthly retirement income calculation, said Jones. The tool compares projected income amounts with anticipated income needs and provides suggestions for closing gaps.

The goal is to get participants to use the more advanced calculation and drive them to take action to improve their retirement readiness, Jones said.

SunTrust serves as the recordkeeper for almost 700 401(k) retirement plans.


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