The investment community is hopeful that with a little tweaking, target-date funds could be the ideal solution for getting apathetic investors into an age-appropriate asset allocation.

Still in their early, formative years, target-date funds are not perfect and will probably never replace individually customized portfolio management, but when used as the default option in automatically enrolled 401(k) plans and combined with automatic escalation, the funds can get hands-off investors channeled into a pretty good product.

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