Retirees most likely to consult with someone for IRA rollover information.
Information is key for investors deciding whether to rollover their 401(k) into an IRA, but even with the pervasiveness of mobile technology and social media, investors still prefer more old school research methods.
Nearly half (47 percent) of investors we surveyed said they spoke with someone to get answers to specific questions before making the decision whether to rollover their 401(k). Slightly less (43 percent) spoke with someone to get detailed explanation of his or her rollover options. Brochures and other written materials were more beneficial than interactive online planning tools, investors said.
Of those surveyed, retirees were more apt to seek out someone to answer questions and have options explained to them. Those still working, and who would tend to be younger and more comfortable using the Internet, were the most likely to use interactive online tools to get their information.
Who are investors most likely to seek out to have their questions answered? Nearly 40 percent sought out a professional advisor. Of these, nearly half were retirees. Slightly less (38 percent) sought counsel from family or friends. Of these, 42 percent were still working and changing jobs.
There is a correlation between usage of professional advisors and account balances. Thirty percent of those with between $5,000 and $25,000 to more than half (52 percent) of those with more than $250,000. Those with balances of less than $50,000 were most likely to consult with friends and family.
A third overall logged on to check out online sources, while 30 percent consulted their plan provider. The next most sought-after source of information was an employer. Retirees, presumably with more time on their hands, were twice as likely as investors overall to attend seminars. Those with an account balance between $50,000 and $99,000 are also more likely to attend a seminar than other wealth levels.