SmartTALK

Retirement Plan Reselection Deadline Is June 1; Eligible Members Can Enroll Online or by Mail

STRS Ohio mailed reselection packets in March to members who are eligible to make their retirement plan reselection in 2020. The final reselection option is now open to those who enrolled as new members between July 1, 2015, and June 30, 2016, and selected either STRS Ohio’s Defined Contribution Plan or Combined Plan.

Members who are now eligible for their plan reselection have until June 1, 2020, to complete their enrollment. If you are eligible for reselection and do not choose a plan by the June 1 deadline, you will remain in your current plan with your current allocation. The decision you make now will be permanent and the plan you select will remain your retirement plan for as long as you remain an STRS Ohio member. The packets mailed in March included personalized account information, an overview of each retirement plan and a plan comparison chart.

You can make your plan reselection through your Online Personal Account. Click on “Member Information” in the top menu and then “Retirement Plan Reselection” under Useful Links.

If you have questions, need more information regarding your reselection decision or would like a paper enrollment form to complete, please call the STRS Ohio Member Services Center toll-free at 888‑227‑7877 or read the “Plan Reselection Deadline is June 1 for Defined Contribution and Combined Plan Participants” story on our website.

Total Guaranteed Return Choice 2020 Term Ends June 30

If you allocated contributions to the Total Guaranteed Return Choice 2020 (for contributions made between July 1, 2015, and June 30, 2016), you have an important decision to make about your asset allocation. The five-year term for this choice ends on June 30, 2020, at which time you will need to transfer the accumulated value to other STRS Ohio allocation choices. If no action is taken, the accumulated value of the Total Guaranteed Return Choice 2020 will automatically be rolled into the STRS Target Choice option that falls immediately before your 60th birthday (or the next closest STRS Target Choice option if you have already reached age 60). Watch your mail in the coming weeks for more information and instructions about how to make your selection.

Investor’s Corner

Market Volatility

Turmoil in the investment markets can make looking at your account statement stressful. You may even be tempted to radically change your asset allocation. But before you make any significant changes, it would be wise to talk with a retirement specialist. Your asset allocation choices should take into account your retirement goals, how long you have until your retirement date and your ability to tolerate market risk. STRS Ohio has contracted with Nationwide Retirement Solutions (NRS) to help administer STRS Ohio’s defined contribution accounts. NRS retirement specialists can discuss your STRS Ohio investment choices with you by phone. You can reach an NRS representative by calling toll-free 866‑332‑3342, Monday–Friday 8 a.m.–6 p.m.

Investment Choice Profile

This quarter’s SmartTALK profiles the STRS Bloomberg Barclays U.S. Universal Bond Index Choice.

The STRS Bloomberg Barclays U.S. Universal Bond Index Choice is an allocation choice that is intended to closely match the return of the Bloomberg Barclays U.S. Universal Bond Index, before fees. This choice consists entirely of U.S. dollar-denominated securities and is intended to be an intermediate-term investment vehicle due to the moderate variability of its returns. A significant portion of the index includes debt issued by the U.S. government and other government-related entities, residential and commercial mortgage-backed securities and investment-grade corporate bonds. The value of bonds is sensitive to changes in interest rates. When interest rates fall, bond prices rise and vice versa. Total returns are comprised of changes in principal values plus interest income earned. Intermediate and long-term performance figures for this and all allocation choices are provided on the Investment Performance Report.

Please see the Investment Performance Report for important disclosures about the Bloomberg Barclays U.S. Universal Bond Index Choice, including disclaimers regarding Bloomberg and the Bloomberg Barclays Indices.

Ask SmartTalk

What is a “recession” and how long does one typically last?

The most commonly accepted definition of a recession is two consecutive quarters of negative growth as measured by gross domestic product (GDP). Consequences often include a decrease in consumer and business spending, increased unemployment and falling stock prices. Recessions can have different characteristics and last for varying amounts of time. The National Bureau of Economic Research measured business cycles from the year 1854 through 2009 and says the average contraction during this time period lasted about 17.5 months.