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CITs Are Our Whole World.

A valuable option for retirement plan advisors looking to pursue a more holistic strategy, Collective Investment Trusts (CITs) pool assets from qualified investors to a single investment portfolio or fund.


CITs are gaining market share as stakeholders become more cognizant of the potential benefits they can provide.

Over 290% growth from 2011 to 2021


CIT assets are
rapidly increasing 

($5,493 billion in 2021)

Source: Cerulli Associates, The Cerulli Report - US Defined Contribution Distribution 2022: Tailoring Solutions to the Consultant-Intermediated Fiduciary Landscape. There is no assurance that any investment strategy will be successful.


CIT governance is shaped by a triad of influences. State and federal banking laws, federal securities laws, and ERISA all inform the requirements of administering and maintaining CITs using prudent oversight.

Fee Flexibility

In general, CITs have lower administrative, marketing, and distribution costs versus mutual funds with similar strategies. 

Tax Advantage

CITs are tax-exempt. As a result, the trustee generally is able to make investment decisions without tax considerations. 

Fiduciary Responsibilities

By selecting a CIT, the plan sponsor is relieved from fiduciary responsibility for the day-to-day investment management decisions made on behalf of the CIT and remains responsible only for prudently overseeing and monitoring the CIT and its trustee.

What Are CITs?

CITs are tax-exempt, pooled investment vehicles sponsored and maintained by a trustee bank or trust company.

Here are two questions

We encourage plan sponsors and their team to consider these questions as you explore various vehicle choices for defined contribution plans:


How can you optimize to better fulfill the investment needs of your participants?


What impact would the potential for lower fees and enhanced flexibility have on your participant’s long-term investment goals?

 "As interest in CITs continues to surge in employer-sponsored retirement plans, we see a prime opportunity to streamline the use of these investment vehicles and to provide greater access to them for plan sponsors, advisors, recordkeepers and participants."

- Rob Barnett; President & Chief Executive Officer


Thought Leadership

Breaking Down Myths & Realities of CITs

In this paper, we discuss what CITs are, review their benefits and then consider the factors driving their adoption. 

Additional Articles and Insights

Top Questions and Answers around CIT Governance

When plan fiduciaries are constructing a plan investment menu, there are several factors that should be considered.

Collective Investment Trusts and Good Governance Considerations

What plan sponsors and financial providers need to know about CIT governance. 

What Are Collective Investment Trusts, and Why Consider Them?

As the industry has evolved, so has the structure of investment vehicles used in 401(k) plans. CITs have been available for decades, and were first launched in 1927.

Great Gray is a leader in the collective investment trust (CIT) market with over $143 billion in collective investment fund assets, across funds managed by 70+ sub-advisors and maintains trading agreements with 40 trading platforms that access 200+ recordkeepers as of 9/30/23.

Taking the Lead

The Future of CIT Onboarding is Here

Being an industry leader in CITs means always thinking of ways to make managing qualified plans easier and more convenient for you – and the client accounts you manage. Our new approach to participation agreements will balance modern-day innovation with a streamlined approach so you can access everything you need in one location.


Learn how to start streamlining your approach to participation agreements with boardingpass™ 

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