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KANSAS CITY, Mo., May 2, 2013 - In a move underscoring American Century Investments' commitment to clients and prospects in the defined contribution plan marketplace, the asset management firm will add a new retirement plan share class to many of its mutual funds and consolidate its asset allocation "fund-of-funds" portfolios under a single sub-brand.
The new "R6" retirement plan shares1 will have the lowest total expense ratio of any share class offered by American Century Investments. Designed for use in employer-sponsored retirement plans, American Century Investments expects the share class to be available on July 31 for 42 funds, including the firm's target-date portfolios.
Prior to the availability of the new share class, American Century Investments is changing the name of its target-date funds from LIVESTRONG® Portfolios to One Choice Portfolios®, consolidating the firm's target-date and target-risk funds of funds under a single banner. Effective May 31, the name change extends to the entire fund series, which includes funds with target dates in five-year increments from 2015 through 2055 and an "in retirement" portfolio. The renamed target-date funds complement five existing static target-risk funds that launched in 2004.
"The new share class gives our clients more options when determining the best way to pay for the investment management and recordkeeping costs associated with employer-sponsored retirement plans," said Chief Client Officer - Americas Peter Cieszko, whose responsibilities include oversight of American Century Investments' defined contribution investment-only (DCIO) business. "Expanding access to our product line at all price points maximizes flexibility for our clients. Furthermore, we believe that the consolidation of our target-date and target-risk funds under our already-established 'One Choice' sub-brand will make it easier to navigate our range of quality retirement investment solutions," he said.
American Century has used the LIVESTRONG name on its target-date funds since 2006, when the company began working with the highly rated cancer charity to help it fund and promote programs serving those affected by the disease. The Foundation's mission to serve cancer survivors complemented American Century Investments' already strong connection to cancer research, according to American Century Chief Marketing Officer Mark Killen. The firm is owned in part by the Stowers Institute for Medical Research, a biomedical research organization focused on finding cures for cancer and other gene-based diseases. Each year, more than 40 percent of company profits are directed to the Stowers Institute. Since 2000, the Institute has received nearly $1 billion in company dividends.
"Seven years ago, the co-branding of our target-date funds as LIVESTRONG was an innovative way to support those impacted by cancer, while sharing with clients and the public at large how a significant portion of our corporate profits fund lifesaving research," said Killen. "Our relationship with LIVESTRONG has been a great success. In fact, it inspired us to begin working with a number of organizations whose programs also help those affected by cancer. While we continue to support LIVESTRONG and its mission, in light of our broadened commitment to the cause, showcasing a single entity no longer tells the full story."
Beyond its relationship with LIVESTRONG, American Century Investments' efforts on behalf of those affected by cancer range from raising funds for worthy charities to promoting advocacy among its employees, clients and the financial services industry at large. Other cancer-related affiliations include the American Cancer Society's Making Strides Against Breast Cancer program, the CEO Roundtable on Cancer (Gold Standard Accreditation), Cancer Support Community/Gilda's Club and the Expect Miracles Foundation.
"The LIVESTRONG Foundation's great partnership with American Century has helped propel our service to more than 2.5 million cancer patients and survivors," said Doug Ulman, president and CEO of the LIVESTRONG Foundation. "American Century became a devoted and enthusiastic partner to the LIVESTRONG Foundation at a time when few of its peers were embracing innovative philanthropic causes. American Century Investments' commitment to funding cancer research means hope for people diagnosed in the future. At the same time, American Century understands that serving those affected by cancer today is equally important. We are grateful for our shared successes and look forward to American Century's continued support of our mission and so many others' in the cancer community, both in research and patient-focused endeavors."
The new name and addition of R6 share classes will not affect the investment objective or investment approach of American Century Investments' target-date funds. The fund series, which has attracted approximately $7.6 billion2 from retirement plan participants and individual investors, continues to be managed by its Mountain View, Calif.-based asset allocation team. Also, the underlying funds in the renamed One Choice Target Date Portfolios will not invest in tobacco companies.
A One Choice Portfolio's target date is the approximate year when investors plan to retire or start withdrawing their money. The principal value of the investment is not guaranteed at any time, including at the target date. Each target-date portfolio seeks the highest total return consistent with its asset mix. Over time, the asset mix and weightings are adjusted to be more conservative. In general, as the target year approaches, the portfolio's allocation becomes more conservative by decreasing the allocation to stocks and increasing the allocation to bonds and money market instruments.
In 2012, American Century Investments' target-date funds received an "A" grade from independent third-party researchers BrightScope and Target Date Analytics in a study3 ranking asset management firms and their target date funds. Called "Popping the Hood V, 2012," this is the second year in a row American Century Investments was among the top grade earners in the study.
"Given the industry accolades our target-date funds have received, the simplification of the branding and the new pricing options, we feel that we have a compelling DCIO offering, well suited for meeting the needs of plan sponsors, consultants and plan participants," said Cieszko.
American Century Investments is a leading privately held investment management firm, committed to delivering superior investment performance and building long-term client relationships since 1958. Serving investment professionals, institutions, corporations and individual investors, American Century Investments offers a variety of actively managed investment disciplines through an array of products including mutual funds, institutional separate accounts, commingled trusts and sub-advisory accounts. The company's 1,300 employees serve clients from offices in New York; London; Hong Kong; Mountain View, Calif. and Kansas City, Mo. James E. Stowers Jr. is founder of the company and Jonathan S. Thomas is president and chief executive officer. For more information, visit www.americancentury.com.
1Registration statement amendments relating to these shares have been or will be filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission but have not yet become effective. The shares may not be sold, nor offers to buy be accepted, prior to the time the registration statement amendments become effective. This communication shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy nor shall there be any sale of the shares in any State in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such State.
2Assets as of March 31, 2013.
3The BrightScope and Target Date Analytics "Popping the Hood V, 2012" and "Popping the Hood IV, 2011" studies grade target-date mutual fund families on five criteria, including performance, fees, risk, organizational structure and strategy. The Overall Score for each fund family is simply the product of the scores of the five major components, weighted as follows: Company/Organization: 10%; Strategy: 15%; Performance: 30%; Risk: 25%; Fees: 20%. Each fund series receives an overall score and ranking. For the 2012 study, researchers analyzed 49 fund companies, but ranked only 42; those where the fund series was old enough to have three years of operating performance data. The 2012 study uses 2011 performance data as of 12/31/2011. The study is conducted on an annual basis and a new study will be available in July 2013. For the study released in 2011, researchers analyzed 48 fund companies, but ranked only 34; those where the fund series was old enough to have three years of operating performance data. This study uses 2010 performance data as of 12/31/2010. The study is conducted on an annual basis and a new study was available in July 2012. Both the 2012 and 2011 studies are based on the lowest price share class offered by each fund family, typically the institutional share class. This share class is not available to the general public. The investor class, A, C, and R share classes are subject to higher expenses. Please consult the prospectus for the eligibility for each specific share class.
Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Investment return and fund share value will fluctuate and it is possible to lose money by investing in these funds.
The performance of each One Choice Portfolio is dependent on the performance of its underlying American Century Investments' funds and will assume the risks associated with these funds. The risks will vary according to each portfolio's asset allocation, and a fund with a later target date is expected to be more volatile than one with an earlier target date.
You should consider the fund's investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses carefully before you invest. Each fund's prospectus or summary prospectus, which can be obtained by visiting americancentury.com, contains this and other information about the fund, and should be read carefully before investing.
LIVESTRONG is a registered trademark of the LIVESTRONG Foundation®. American Century Investment Services, Inc. has entered into an agreement with the Foundation for rights to use the LIVESTRONG name.
American Century Investment Services, Inc., Distributor
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