Investment carriers pay for their operations by assessing fees on their investment funds. The fees are subtracted from the investment returns or earnings of those funds. The combination of these fees will generally equal a fund’s expense ratio, which is reported as a percent of assets under management.
There are no sales charges or loads on any TIAA or Fidelity Investments proprietary funds offered through the U-M plans. All transaction fees (ex. for taking a loan, cash withdrawals, etc.) have been waived and there are no account maintenance fees. In addition, U-M does not pay any fees to TIAA or Fidelity Investments.
All CREF variable annuities, TIAA mutual funds, and the Fidelity Investment Freedom Index Funds through U-M plans are offered at the lowest-cost share class available. Twenty-nine Fidelity mutual funds are offered through the Class K shares which have lower fees than the non-Class K share class available to the general public. In addition, the 14 Vanguard mutual funds available through the TIAA and Fidelity recordkeeping platforms are offered at the lower-cost Institutional, Admiral, or Investor share classes. Low fees mean more of your money remains in your account, working toward your financial future, and your retirement account balances have more earning potential.