The 401k Averages Book is one of the great publications in the retirement plan business and I recommend it. I won’t recommend a report they just did because it was stating the obvious.
According to their report: “Are All $5,000,000 401k Plans Created Equal?”, the size of a 401(k) plan’s average participant account balance will influence the amount of fees they pay.
The report states that there can be a big price difference for a $5 million 401(k) Plan if the plan has 100 participants as opposed to 500 participants.
According to their report, the total bundled cost for a plan with 100 participants and an average account balance of $50,000 is 1.25 percent as compared to 1.56 percent for a 500-participant plan with an average account balance of $10,000.
Of course it is. Most third party administrators I know charge a per head price in addition to other fees, so a plan with more participants will usually pay more than one has less even if they have the same amount of assets.