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Delivering value at a low cost

It’s about more than fees

All target date providers make crucial investment decisions that impact participant outcomes. So the focus should be on the benefit, not just the cost.

No target date fund is truly passive

The table below shows a selection of underlying investment decisions made by target date providers. Even passive providers make active asset allocation decisions.

Type of target date series

Asset allocation decision

Selection of underlying securities

Fully devoted to maximizing returns and managing risk relative to the broad market




Source: Capital Group. Target date types based on methodology from Morningstar, which uses the percentage of a series’ assets in underlying active strategies to classify each series as active (80% to 100% actively managed), hybrid (20% to 80% actively managed) or passive (less than 20% actively managed). Blank fields indicate the source of returns isn't applicable to that type of target date series.

Giving participants more, for less

Expense ratios for target date series vary significantly, but our Series stands out as one of the cheapest despite using 100% active underlying funds — undercutting hybrid providers that mix passive and active funds.

Average annual expense ratio of 51 target date series

This chart shows how our Series has lower fees than the average active target date series fee of 0.48% and hybrid target date series fee of 0.40%. But our Series has slightly higher annual fees than the average passive series at 0.34% versus 0.21%.

Source: Capital Group, using data obtained from Morningstar. As of December 31, 2021. Data shown is of the lowest cost mutual fund share class for each peer target date series. Average expense ratio shown is a straight average of expenses of all vintages of the lowest cost share class available as of December 31, 2021. The percentage of a series’ assets in underlying active strategies (as calculated by Morningstar) was used to classify each series as active (80% to 100% actively managed), hybrid (20% to 80%) or passive (less than 20%). The active category contained 17 series, hybrid contained 20 series, and passive contained 14 series.

Compare outcomes, not just fees

American Funds Target Date Series vintages have delivered superior outcomes compared to large passive peers with additional returns that, on average, have exceeded the additional cost. The charts below illustrate the range of higher returns and additional expenses by vintage.


Solid building blocks

Our funds have delivered peer-beating results and held up well in down markets.


A distinctive approach

Our glide path is different. While our Series changes the mix between stocks and bonds, it also changes the types of assets held. This is designed to better align with participant needs over time.


Discover what sets our Series apart

Target date funds have a lot in common. But the American Funds Target Date Series takes a distinctive approach that has delivered uncommon investment outcomes and helped thousands of participants come closer to achieving their financial goals.

Compare us to the competition

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Contact us

Our team is ready to help you help participants.

Important investment disclosures

Figures shown are past results and are not predictive of results in future periods. Current and future results may be lower or higher than those shown. Investing for short periods makes losses more likely.

Investments are not FDIC-insured, nor are they deposits of or guaranteed by a bank or any other entity, so they may lose value.

Investors should carefully consider investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses. This and other important information is contained in the fund prospectuses and summary prospectuses, which can be obtained from a financial professional and should be read carefully before investing.

Each target date portfolio is composed of a mix of underlying funds and is subject to the risks and returns of those funds. Underlying funds may be added or removed during the year. Although the target date portfolios are managed for investors on a projected retirement date time frame, the allocation strategy does not guarantee that investors' retirement goals will be met. The target date is the year that corresponds roughly to the year in which an investor is assumed to retire and begin taking withdrawals. Investment professionals manage the portfolio, moving it from a more growth-oriented strategy to a more income-oriented focus as the target date gets closer. Investment professionals continue to manage each portfolio for approximately 30 years after it reaches its target date.

Capital Group offers a range of share classes designed to meet the needs of retirement plan sponsors and participants. The different share classes incorporate varying levels of financial professional compensation and service provider payments. Because Class R-6 shares do not include any recordkeeping payments, expenses are lower and results are higher. Other share classes that include recordkeeping costs have higher expenses and lower results than Class R-6.

Statements attributed to an individual represent the opinions of that individual as of the date published and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Capital Group or its affiliates. This information is intended to highlight issues and should not be considered advice, an endorsement or a recommendation.

All Capital Group trademarks mentioned are owned by The Capital Group Companies, Inc., an affiliated company or fund. All other company and product names mentioned are the property of their respective companies.

Investment results assume all distributions are reinvested and reflect applicable fees and expenses.

View results and yields without fee waiver and/or expense reimbursement.

Use of this website is intended for U.S. residents only. Use of this website and materials is also subject to approval by your home office.

American Funds Distributors, Inc., member FINRA.

This content, developed by Capital Group, home of American Funds, should not be used as a primary basis for investment decisions and is not intended to serve as impartial investment or fiduciary advice.

©2022 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Except for Lipper rating information, the information contained herein: (1) is proprietary to Morningstar and/or its content providers; (2) may not be copied or distributed; and (3) is not warranted to be accurate, complete or timely. Neither Morningstar, its content providers nor Capital Group are responsible for any damages or losses arising from any use of this information. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Information is calculated by Morningstar. Due to differing calculation methods, the figures shown here may differ from those calculated by Capital Group.

Certain share classes were offered after the inception dates of some funds. Results for these shares prior to the dates of first sale are hypothetical based on the original share class results without a sales charge, adjusted for typical estimated expenses.

  • Class R-6 shares were first offered on 5/1/2009.

Results for certain funds with an inception date after the share class inception also include hypothetical returns because those funds' shares sold after the funds' date of first offering. View dates of first sale and specific expense adjustment information.