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Going Beyond the Numbers With Target Date Funds:
The Importance of Exploring Process, Beliefs & Strategy

Episode Guests:

Jerome Clark, CFA
Portfolio Manager, Asset Allocation Group
T. Rowe Price
Rich Weiss  

Chief Investment Officer, Multi-Asset Strategies

American Century

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The podcast series where employers find candid, in-depth interviews with industry experts, new best practices and valuable perspectives on current events. 

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Recap, highlights, and my thoughts

No matter how you slice it target date funds continue to play a larger role each year in the conversation around workplace retirement plan outcomes.  However, some of the decisions that plan sponsors and fiduciaries make on their target date funds are not evolving as quickly as maybe they should.  When I discuss with employers how they selected their target date strategy often times I hear answers like, they had the best performance, they were inexpensive or they were the one our provider offered.  While these details and others are important in selecting a target date strategy that will match your employee demographics and needs, there is much more that can and should be explored. 


To help inform that conversation and illustrate how two very successful target date strategies can take very different approaches I happy to welcome back Rich Weiss, the CIO for Multi-Asset Strategies at American Century and Jerome Clark, a Portfolio Manager in the Asset Allocation Group at T. Rowe Price.  As portfolio managers of their respective firms target date strategies, there are certain things that both Rich and Jerome agree on but much more that they take very different approaches to or have very different opinions on. 


Not only was this a ton of fun to have both guys on the podcast, but it illustrates just how important it is to get beyond the numbers when evaluating target date investments and to ensure you understand their process, beliefs and strategies. 

Tis the season for giving & sharing!  If you have been enjoying the podcast please mention it to a friend, share on social media or leave a review on iTunes or your favorite podcast app.  All of that goes a long way to help grow our audience, attract high quality guests and keep sharing high quality timely content. 

As a bonus, below are a few pieces of info Brett & Jake mentioned during our conversation.  

Thanks for listening! 

Sincerely Your Host, 

Rick Unser


Guest Bios

Jerome Clark is a portfolio manager in the T. Rowe Price Asset Allocation Group and co-manages the firm's Asset Allocation Target Date Strategies and oversees the College Savings Plan portfolios. He is a member of the firm's Asset Allocation Committee and a vice president of T. Rowe Price Group, Inc.


Mr. Clark has 25 years of investment experience, all of which have been at T. Rowe Price. He joined the firm in 1992 as a quantitative analyst in the Fixed Income Division. He was the portfolio manager of the U.S. Treasury Long-Term Bond Strategy from 1998 through 2003 and began managing asset allocation portfolios in 2001. Prior to joining T. Rowe Price, Mr. Clark was a captain in the United States Marine Corps and spent three years as a mathematics instructor at the U.S. Naval Academy.


Mr. Clark earned a B.S. in mathematics from the U.S. Naval Academy, an M.S. in operations research from the Naval Postgraduate School, and an M.B.A. in finance from Johns Hopkins University. He has also earned the Chartered Financial Analyst designation.

Richard Weiss is a Senior Vice President and Chief Investment Officer, Multi-Asset Strategies for American Century Investments.  He is the co-portfolio manager for the firm’s asset allocation strategies, including Strategic Allocation, Global Allocation and One Choice Portfolios®. He also serves as a member of the firm’s Investment Oversight and Asset Allocation Committees, which is responsible for establishing investment policy and reviewing investment decisions for all of our asset allocation products.

Prior to joining the firm in 2010, Rich was executive vice president and chief investment officer of City National Bank, where he was responsible for their $12 billion investment management group and directed investment policy and strategy. Previously, he was executive vice president and chief investment officer at Sanwa Bank California, where he managed all aspects of their investment department. Earlier in his career, Rich held senior investment positions at Vantage Global Advisors, TSA Capital Management, PaineWebber and Mellon Bank. He has worked in the investment industry since 1984.

Rich holds a bachelor’s degree in finance from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from the University of Chicago. He has authored several academic papers and is well known for his advanced work in the field of global investing.

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