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Prospecting with Form 5500

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Aug 14, 2008 6:06 pm

I am trying to use the 5500 to prospect some new 401(k) clients, I know some people say its a waste of time but I need to add some to my list. Are there any tips or tricks that I could easily use to get my foot in the door by using this form? It is quite lenghtly.

  Thanks in advance.
Aug 14, 2008 6:16 pm
Can you READ and INTERPRET the data in the 5500 form?   The form itself won't get you anywhere, but the data can be PRICELESS!
Aug 14, 2008 6:23 pm

I know you can find out what the administration charges are or if the plan is 404c compliant. But I just read that you can find out how many times the plan has switched hands since it was started.

  Is there anything like that, that you pull from the data that is something you always turn to as a way to get in the door? Or what is the first thing you look for when you review the form?   This is a new tool for me and I agree that it has a lot of potential.
Aug 15, 2008 12:43 am

Larry save yourself the trouble and first answer some questions about you.  First, are you a indy or at a wire?  Second familiarize yourself with five 401 (k) platforms.  By this I mean find out about five different vendors you could take a potential new client two.  Third go google the Pension Protection Act and study about what the implications are of this.  Next develop a working relationship with two NON-PRODUCING TPAS  in your area.  If you don’t know non producing means the TPA is not selling retirement plans and acting as BOR (broker of record) on any.  After completing all of the above steps and actually getting a foundation for QRP (Qualfied Retirement Plans) focus on producing TPA’s. I can’t say this enough it is a major confict of interest to have the TPA getting paid three ways.  Fist revenue sharing from the vendor on the assets in the plan, second basis point trail as broker from assets in the plan, and third the hard dollar administrator costs with the plan.  Find out who the producing TPA’s are and attack their business.  I gurantee you they will almost always be in old group annuity contracts with huge wrap fees because they are making huge amounts of money multiple ways.  You can look at this info on the form 5500 but you are going to have to learn more about this biz before you will start getting it.

Aug 15, 2008 1:49 pm

I just read about this new tool from Opp. Funds. Has anyone see it? Is it worth taking a look at?


Form 5500 Data Mining Program

This year, Retirement Services introduced a Form 5500 Data Mining presentation for financial advisors. The 5500 Program includes a presentation with case studies to help advisors understand how to use information from the Form 5500 as a prospecting tool. Form 5500 offers important public information about retirement plan sponsors' current plans, and it is crucial for financial advisors to understand how to analyze the information in the filings to help generate retirement plan conversion business. The presentation explains how to analyze the information found in certain of the Form's sections, and suggests questions financial advisors can pose to potential clients. Using Form 5500 as a data-gathering tool to research retirement plans can help financial advisors grow their retirement business by developing possible solutions tailored for individual prospects.

"We continually seek ways to help educate advisors and provide them with new prospecting tools," said Fuerman. "Knowing how to best analyze the information in these types of filings can help them work with clients more effectively."

Jul 10, 2015 12:06 am

A great exchange of information.

Aug 14, 2015 12:19 pm

We actually do a pretty decent job of parsing these over at You can sort by location, asset size, etc.