Mutual fund giant Fidelity Investments introduced a simplified version of individual retirement account plans, designed for employees of small businesses.

A program like Fidelity's is called a savings incentive match plan, or Simple for short, and allows employees to invest tax-deferred savings to finance retirement. The employers' contributions are tax-deductible as business expenses.

Legislation enacted last summer authorized the plans. The legislation simplified technical and reporting requirements for small-business retirement plans.

Participants in Fidelity's program can chose to invest their contributions in 10 no-load Fidelity mutual funds or use a brokerage account to invest individual stocks, bonds, or other mutual funds.

Some of the Fidelity mutual funds included are managed so that the asset mix becomes more conservative as the employee approaches retirement age.

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