More than a decade ago, Fidelity Investments of Boston formed Institutional Retirement Services Co. to target the small-business 401(k) market. Today, with the retirement plan market tighter than ever, fund firms have begun to pursue the ultimate small business: individual 401(k)s.

Earlier this month, Waddell & Reed of Overland Park, Kan., became the third fund company to offer 401(k)s for the self-employed and business owners who have no employees. Pioneer Investment Management of Boston and AIM Funds Management of Houston both launched similar products in January [see MFMN 1/21/02].

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