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Widely Held Stocks in 401(k)s


Widely Held Stocks in 401(k)s

Do you know what's in your 401(k)?

Probably not.

The more than 33,000 active participants in Abbott Laboratories Stock Retirement Plan, for example, may be surprised to learn that American Funds Growth Fund of America is one of the top funds in the company's 401(k) plan — and that fund's top holding is the world's most valuable company ever. You may be just as fortunate to own this unbelievably profitable stock. (We'll reveal its identity later.)

It's pretty easy to find out the top mutual funds in your 401(k), but it takes a little more digging to find out the most widely held stocks in those funds. Who has the time to do that much homework? Well, we did it for you.

We asked BrightScope,a website that rates plans of more than 45,000 employers using hundreds of data points obtained from publicly available data, to tell us which mutual funds dominate the 401(k) landscape.

According to the company, these are among the top five equity mutual funds in most 401(k) plans: American Funds Growth Fund of America, EuroPacific Growth Fund, Davis NY Venture Fund, Fidelity Contrafund and Vanguard 500 Index Fund.

Next, we asked researchers at Morningstarto compile a list of the most widely held stocks in these funds, based on the total weight of available investments. You may be surprised to learn what we found.

Here is the list of the companies you may own.

By Sharon Epperson and Judy Gee

Published Sept. 10, 2012

Photo: Tom Grill | Photographer's Choice RF | Getty Images