Four Boeing employees filed a federal class action lawsuit in District Court in East St. Louis alleging Boeing charged fees and expenses to their 401k plan that were unreasonable.

The plaintiffs, Gary Spano of Godfrey, John Bunk of Shipman, James White of St. Peters, Mo., and Victor Dubbs of St. Clair, Mo., are seeking to recover losses suffered by the plan and to obtain injunctive relief from Boeing.

In the complaint plaintiffs state their 401k plans provide a number of investment alternatives into which employees place a portion of their current income with the hope of earning, over time, a return sufficient to support themselves and their families in retirement.

They claim the return on their investments is critical and even seemingly small reductions in a participant's return in one year may substantially impair his or her accumulated savings at retirement.

The plaintiffs claim issues that are common to all class members are whether Boeing:

  • Charged fees and expenses to the plan that were, or are, unreasonable or not incurred solely for the benefit of plan participants;

  • Caused the plan to enter into agreements with third-parties that caused or allowed the Plan to pay fees and expenses that were, or are, unreasonable or not incurred solely for the benefit of plan participants;

  • Failed to monitor the fees and expenses paid by the plan and, by such failure, caused or allowed the Plan to pay fees and expenses that were, or are, unreasonable or not incurred solely for the benefit of plan participants;

  • Failed to inform thems of the various methods by which vendors in the 401k collect payments and other revenues from plans;

  • Failed properly to inform, or disclose to, plan participants the fees and expenses that are, or have been, paid by the plan; and

  • In charging, causing to be charged or paid, and failing to monitor the fees and expenses of the Plan, failed to exercise the care, skill, prudence, and diligence that a prudent person would when acting in like capacity and familiar with such matters.

    Based in Chicago, Boeing employs approximately 153,800 employees in 48 states and 67 countries.

    Boeing's major operations are in the Puget Sound area of Washington State, southern California, and St. Louis. Total revenues for Boeing in 2005 were $54.8 billion.

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