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Small-Biz 401(k) Platform Rolls Out Crypto Option

By Alex Padalka June 9, 2021

ForUsAll, which offers a retirement investment platform for small businesses, says it has rolled out a 401(k) platform through which employers can offer cryptocurrency as an alternative investment option.

Alt 401(k), as the new offering is called, lets employers offer cryptocurrencies in their 401(k) through the cryptocurrency platform Coinbase Institutional, according to ForUsAll. The new plan is automated and includes access to traditional and alternative investments, allowing employees to invest up to 5% of their balances in more than 50 different cryptocurrencies, the company says.

ForUsAll says that leading institutional investors put up to 80% of their funds into alternatives, while recent surveys show that 36% of institutions are now making small to moderate allocations to cryptocurrencies.

“By introducing the Alt 401(k), we are democratizing access to what drives wealth for the wealthy — alternative investment options, combined with our original core offering of low-cost index funds, and personalized help,” Jeff Schulte, CEO of ForUsAll, says in a statement.

ForUsAll also claims that cryptocurrencies are more efficient in a 401(k) because of the tax benefits of the plans as well as the ability to use cryptocurrencies for diversification while offering convenience and security. The company believes that offering cryptocurrencies can also be a savings incentive.

“Giving workers access to cryptocurrency in their workplace retirement plan, especially among younger employees who have disproportionately adopted cryptocurrencies, may help to engage participants and increase savings overall,” ForUsAll says in a statement.

Founded in 2012 by professionals who helped build Financial Engines, ForUsAllnow manages more than $1.7 billion, representing more than 70,000 employees, the company says.

Long shunned by traditional financial services firms, cryptocurrencies are quickly being embraced. In March, Morgan Stanley reportedly opened investing in a fund from Bitcoin firm NYDIG and two other bitcoin funds to wealthy clients, and JPMorgan is reportedly planning to offer access to a fund from NYDIG.

UBS is considering various options as a way to offer access to the asset class, while Citigroup is weighing the possibility of offering cryptocurrency services.

Last month, meanwhile, Wells Fargo announced that the asset class has “evolved into a viable investment asset” and its plans to give some clients access to a professionally managed fund investing in digital assets.

Interest in cryptocurrencies has also drawn attention from regulators. Also in May, Securities and Exchange Commission chairman Gary Gensler said that he wants to work “with fellow regulators and with Congress to fill in the gaps of investor protection in these crypto markets.”

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Tags:  Technology , Investment strategies , Retirement planning , Citigroup , JPMorgan , Morgan Stanley , Wells Fargo , UBS , Financial Engines , Securities and Exchange Commission

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