Wednesday, November 04, 2009

BBT protests Wells Fargo effort to contact Pension Plan members, churches

It has been brought to the attention of staff at Brethren Benefit Trust (BBT) that some individual Pension Plan members, as well as churches in the denomination, are being contacted by representatives of Wells Fargo Advisors concerning pensions and retirement. The Wells Fargo Advisors representatives make reference to the BBT website and imply that there are serious issues with the Brethren Pension Plan and that members should be concerned about their investments.

BBT emphasizes that these Wells Fargo Advisors officers are in no way connected to the Brethren Benefit Trust, the Brethren Pension Plan, or the Church of the Brethren denomination. They do not have a thorough understanding of the Brethren Pension Plan, but are clearly trying to undermine the Brethren Pension Plan for their personal benefit.

The Brethren Pension Plan remains a reliable, safe investment for church workers, pastors, district staff, staff of denominational agencies, and employees of retirement communities who are looking for security in retirement. Investing of the funds under BBT’s management is performed by eight national managers who are reviewed quarterly, and the funds are well diversified in market sectors. Although the Pension Plan has recently experienced the first decrease in its annuity assumption rate in its history, it continues to rank highly when compared with similar pension plans.

In the spirit of Matthew 18, BBT is sending a letter to the two representatives who are generating the letters from Wells Fargo Advisors, asking them to cease their attacks on the BBT program and to offer an apology to those whom they have contacted. BBT hopes this will resolve the problem, but if not, will pursue other avenues to protect its members and the Brethren Pension Plan.

Since 1943, plan members have looked toward their retirement with a sense of security, trusting that the Brethren Pension Plan would be there for them for the remainder of their lives. BBT takes that responsibility very seriously and intends to live up to those expectations. For questions or concerns about the Brethren Pension Plan, contact Pension Plan director Scott Douglas at 800-746-1505.

-- Patrice Nightingale is director of communications for Brethren Benefit Trust.

Source: 11/5/2009 Newsline Special Report

No comments: