SunTrust Banks Inc. introduced an on-line service for 401(k) retirement plans that lets clients direct transactions.

The Atlanta banking company informed 401(k) clients of the service in statement stuffers mailed at the end of the first quarter.

SunTrust administers $4 billion of 401(k) assets in 300 plans, with 75,000 participants. The Web site was created by SunTrust along with its record keeper, FASCorp of Denver. Besides changing allocations among mutual funds, participants can review balances and tap in to educational materials in an "Investing Basics" section.

"There's a lot of demand for it, both the abilities to inquire and transact and also the financial planning tools," said Barbara Crystal, vice president of marketing in SunTrust's retirement services group. "This provides a fresh, convenient way for people to access the information."

Companies sponsoring 401(k) plans administered by SunTrust can choose mutual funds from eight families: AIM, American Century, Fidelity, Franklin-Templeton, Janus, Putnam, Vanguard, and SunTrust's proprietary fund group, STI Classic. Investors typically narrow the field of choices to eight or nine funds, Ms. Crystal said.

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