To prevent other target-date investors from being burned as so many were in 2008, when the average 2010 and 2015 fund lost 25% of its value or more, more advisers are telling their clients that they need to look closely at the asset allocation and glidepaths of these funds so that half of their portfolios are not exposed to stocks on the eve of their retirement.

“The problem with target-date funds is that the underlying message has been, ‘Look Ma, no hands!,’” Steve Vernon, an Oxnard, Calif., financial adviser told The New York Times. “They tried to make them idiot-proof. But if you put your money in a fund without knowing what they’re invested in, you’re an idiot.”

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