Over the last ten years, there has been a steady trend transition from defined benefit plans to defined contribution plans. As further evidence of this trend, as recently as the end of the fourth quarter of 2013, defined contribution plan (“DC”) assets amounted to $5.9 trillion, compared to just $3.0 trillion in assets for private-sector defined benefit (“DB”) plans. At the same time, DC plan fiduciaries are seeking to achieve the historically higher returns of DB plans by venturing into alternative investments (real estate, private equity and hedge funds). In the face of the large amounts of capital now being funded to DC plans and the desire by DC plan fiduciaries to improve returns, fund sponsors have been actively courting such DC plans and establishing investment vehicles tailored to the needs of such DC plans (such investment vehicles are referred to herein generally as “DC Funds”).
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