Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

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livesoft
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Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

Post by livesoft » Sun Jun 18, 2017 6:04 pm

siahus wrote:In this day and age, if they do video chat with clients, they should advertise it, or ask me when I make an appt if I would like it!
I think they sent me an e-mail or something with a statement or maybe in their "In the Vanguard" monthly newsletter? I don't know how well their video chat features even works.
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Jackson12
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Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

Post by Jackson12 » Sun Jun 18, 2017 6:27 pm

Careful wrote:
rakamaka wrote:It is easy to invest in TIAA. It is super-difficult to take money out. They will make you running with (printed, missing, numerous) forms to mail or trick you to transfer into 10 year equal pay annuity instead of lumpsum withdrawal at retirement.
Not good while you need money the most.
.
rakamaka - Are you talking about the restrictions on TIAA Traditional - the guaranteed fund? Or are there difficulties on moving other things out of T-C also?

I'm not aware of the 10-year equal pay annuity vs lumpsum -- could you explain that further? We both have T-C 503Bs (mine is old, and small, spouse's is current and likely to grow larger -- but we could do VG Funds at Spouse's 403B run by T-C...

thanks for clarification!
Do you have TIAA Traditional Or perhaps Retirement Choice guaranteed funds? If so, This Boglehead page explains the 10 year TPA (Transfer Payout Annuity) option. Scroll down the page to see it. https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/TIAA

novicemoney
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Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

Post by novicemoney » Sun Oct 22, 2017 7:02 pm

I ran across this article and was (maybe a little naively) shocked. I always had the impression that TIAA was one of the "good guys". To be fair, I don't know a lot about them except by general reputation and we have no accounts with them. I always associated them with teacher 403b's, and even thought I have a low opinion of teacher 403b plans, I always thought TIAA plans were some of the better ones. I guess it's caveat emptor as far as financial institutions are concerned.

I was going to post this as a new thread but did a search and decided to revive it instead. Can one be a boglehead and use TIAA?

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/21/busi ... share&_r=0

student
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Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

Post by student » Sun Oct 22, 2017 7:04 pm

novicemoney wrote:
Sun Oct 22, 2017 7:02 pm
I ran across this article and was (maybe a little naively) shocked. I always had the impression that TIAA was one of the "good guys". To be fair, I don't know a lot about them except by general reputation and we have no accounts with them. I always associated them with teacher 403b's, and even thought I have a low opinion of teacher 403b plans, I always thought TIAA plans were some of the better ones. I guess it's caveat emptor as far as financial institutions are concerned.

I was going to post this as a new thread but did a search and decided to revive it instead. Can one be a boglehead and use TIAA?

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/21/busi ... share&_r=0
There is a discussion of this. viewtopic.php?f=10&t=230313&newpost=3584013

ResearchMed
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Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

Post by ResearchMed » Sun Oct 22, 2017 7:11 pm

novicemoney wrote:
Sun Oct 22, 2017 7:02 pm
I ran across this article and was (maybe a little naively) shocked. I always had the impression that TIAA was one of the "good guys". To be fair, I don't know a lot about them except by general reputation and we have no accounts with them. I always associated them with teacher 403b's, and even thought I have a low opinion of teacher 403b plans, I always thought TIAA plans were some of the better ones. I guess it's caveat emptor as far as financial institutions are concerned.

I was going to post this as a new thread but did a search and decided to revive it instead. Can one be a boglehead and use TIAA?

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/21/busi ... share&_r=0
There already is a current thread on this:

viewtopic.php?f=10&t=230313&newpost=358 ... ead#unread

There is quite a variety of reactions (no surprise) but a lot of this depends upon what type of account you have/size of employer/which funds are available.

But yes, there are many Bogleheads who use TIAA.
At least part of that is because employer plans include TIAA, with limited or no other choices.

Don't forget that TIAA offers a few investments that are not available elsewhere, most importantly Traditional Annuity, and TREA (their Real Estate Account, one that is *not* a REIT).

RM
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BigoteGato
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Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

Post by BigoteGato » Tue Dec 12, 2017 3:33 pm

I realize this post is a few months old, but in case the OP is still thinking about what to do here are my 2 cents. I've spoken with VG as well as TIAA (and others). I'm OK with Skype but my wife prefers face to face. IMO, TIAA is better for that than VG. There is no charge from TIAA to provide you with an adviser to help you manage your funds. There is a charge if you need additional services (wealth management) as there are in VG. I have not compared those costs as I'm not interested. TIAA person does want you to move your $ to TIAA, but I've only moved retirement funds to take advantage of their guaranteed return ("traditional") product and their (rather unique) real estate product. It was a hard choice to move some $ away from VG, but 2 things persuaded me: (1) the face to face services, and (2) the benefits of the traditional (vs. VG bond funds) in the current interest environment.

InMyDreams
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Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

Post by InMyDreams » Tue Dec 12, 2017 6:46 pm

Morse Code wrote:
Tue Dec 15, 2015 4:34 pm
Does anyone have personal experience with TIAA-CREF's Individual Advisory Services?
That's the fee for asset-under-management group, right?

I narrowly avoided it. I had a meeting with a Wealth Management Advisor, asking for retirement planning and asset allocation advice. The next meeting, the WMA handed me some sort of AA guide, which ended with the charges for the Individual Advisory Services.

Strange, I never spoke with the WMA about wanting that, and it just sort of slipped into the document like of course I would do that. At home, I started looking thru the document, thinking about the charges that were involved (more than my father paid Vanguard for more AUM), realizing that a client-preference questionnaire had been filled out for me that indicated I preferred a slant towards TIAA funds...

Yeah, didn't go there.

jalbert
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Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

Post by jalbert » Tue Dec 12, 2017 8:03 pm

TIAA-CREF lost their non-profit status for tax purposes some years ago (2010?) due to high executive compensation levels.
Index fund investor since 1987.

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DonCamillo
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Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

Post by DonCamillo » Mon Dec 25, 2017 10:16 am

I have about one-third of my retirement invested with TIAA-CREF. That company has caused me ten times as much grief as all the other places I invest combined. Normally, a transfer of money from TIAA-CREF takes 10 days to 3 weeks, far longer than anyone else. They convert you money to cash the day you make the request, than delay for a long time before sending the money and you can reinvest it.

I have been trying since January to take my minimum required distribution from my TIAA-CREF 401a. Although there is only one week left in this year, and I will be taxed 50% on any required amount that is not withdrawn, I have yet to succeed. I have spent many hours on the phone with this problem. They make promises and never follow up. All they need is for the state to confirm my retirement date. The information is in the state computers, I filled out the fourteen-page forms twice, but TIAA-CREF just never gets it certified.

Their expense ratios start about 7 times what I pay on my Vanguard Total Stock Market.

They are definitely NOT "one of the good guys."
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DonCamillo
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Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

Post by DonCamillo » Mon Dec 25, 2017 10:20 am

jalbert wrote:
Tue Dec 12, 2017 8:03 pm
TIAA-CREF lost their non-profit status for tax purposes some years ago (2010?) due to high executive compensation levels.
They lost their tax status because they compete directly with other investment companies and insurance companies.
Representative Bill Archer, Republican of Texas and chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, had initially proposed stripping the group of its special tax status because it competes directly with for-profit insurance companies and mutual fund groups.
http://www.nytimes.com/1997/07/30/busin ... ption.html
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student
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Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

Post by student » Mon Dec 25, 2017 12:54 pm

DonCamillo wrote:
Mon Dec 25, 2017 10:16 am
I have about one-third of my retirement invested with TIAA-CREF. That company has caused me ten times as much grief as all the other places I invest combined. Normally, a transfer of money from TIAA-CREF takes 10 days to 3 weeks, far longer than anyone else. They convert you money to cash the day you make the request, than delay for a long time before sending the money and you can reinvest it.

I have been trying since January to take my minimum required distribution from my TIAA-CREF 401a. Although there is only one week left in this year, and I will be taxed 50% on any required amount that is not withdrawn, I have yet to succeed. I have spent many hours on the phone with this problem. They make promises and never follow up. All they need is for the state to confirm my retirement date. The information is in the state computers, I filled out the fourteen-page forms twice, but TIAA-CREF just never gets it certified.

Their expense ratios start about 7 times what I pay on my Vanguard Total Stock Market.

They are definitely NOT "one of the good guys."
This is not my experience. I transferred my ROTH IRA from TIAA-CREF to another vendor this year. I did it online that took a few minutes and the money was transferred within a week.

As for expense ratio, the retail versions are definitely not competitive but its institutional versions are.

finite_difference
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Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

Post by finite_difference » Mon Dec 25, 2017 1:06 pm

Levett wrote:
Tue Dec 15, 2015 7:35 pm
Here's TIAA's response to the Times sensationalism.

https://www.tiaa-cref.org/public/pdf/C2 ... Report.pdf

Let me know if the Times writer has responded.

Like any organization, TIAA has its benefits and limitations. That includes Vanguard, by the way.

I've invested in the former organization since 1968 and the latter since 1981. They work effectively for me.

I don't use Advisory Services from either organization, nor do I indulge in the melodramatics of "good guys" and "bad guys."

Here's the bottom line for me: both TIAA and Vanguard have been responsible custodians of my investments.

And, no, I have not been "exploited."

What rubbish!

Lev
My parents had a perfectly reasonable CREF Stock and Traditional portfolio, and were convinced by the TIAA CREF financial advisor to move into a complex mixture of 10 different funds with high expense ratios (around 1%, so could definitely be worse.) Whther you consider that to be “exploited” is a matter of degree, but certainly it could’ve been much worse (looking at you Edward Jones/whole life salesmen.)

The advisor said he received no compensation whatsoever for his recommendations. The NYT article made that sound unlikely. Whether it’s true or not, I would avoid the financial advisors except for help with withdrawal strategies and setting up withdrawals. They do seem to do a good job with that.
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grok87
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Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

Post by grok87 » Mon Dec 25, 2017 4:03 pm

finite_difference wrote:
Mon Dec 25, 2017 1:06 pm


My parents had a perfectly reasonable CREF Stock and Traditional portfolio, and were convinced by the TIAA CREF financial advisor to move into a complex mixture of 10 different funds with high expense ratios (around 1%, so could definitely be worse.) Whther you consider that to be “exploited” is a matter of degree, but certainly it could’ve been much worse (looking at you Edward Jones/whole life salesmen.)

The advisor said he received no compensation whatsoever for his recommendations. The NYT article made that sound unlikely. Whether it’s true or not, I would avoid the financial advisors except for help with withdrawal strategies and setting up withdrawals. They do seem to do a good job with that.
i think the problem is that TIAA markets themselves as being "different", their non-profit heritage, the "power of dot org", all that nonsense. It's the old "bait and switch" tactic plain and simple...
Keep calm and Boglehead on. KCBO.

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