Self-Directed Brokerage


What is the PCRA?
The Schwab Personal Choice Retirement Account® (PCRA) is a self-directed brokerage (SDB) option offered through Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. (Member SIPC). With the Schwab PCRA, you will have access to numerous additional mutual funds (many of which are offered as no-load, no-transaction fee funds) through Schwab’s Mutual Fund OneSource program. You will also have access to individual securities that include (but are not limited to) equities, bonds, exchange-traded funds and certificates of deposit.


For whom is this investment option appropriate?
The Schwab PCRA is for knowledgeable investors who acknowledge and understand the risks associated with many of the investment choices available through the PCRA. By utilizing the PCRA, you acknowledge that none of the available options in the PCRA have been reviewed for suitability by your employer, the City of Los Angeles 457 Deferred Compensation Plan (the Plan) or Empower Retirement, your service provider. You are solely responsible for determining suitability of the options that are available through the PCRA. You agree to fully indemnify and hold harmless your employer, the Plan, and any and all service providers to the Plan against any claims, damages or other possible causes of actions resulting from your use of the PCRA.


How do I get started?
Log in to your account and click on the "Investments" tile and then "Self-Directed Accounts" and complete the enrollment process online. All agreement forms must be completed and electronically signed. Schwab will establish the PCRA account immediately on the website. Once Schwab has approved your PCRA application, you will receive a PCRA Welcome Kit in the mail with more information about services, as well as an account verification letter confirming your account number.
Once your account has been opened, you may transfer money from your core account to your Schwab PCRA. Your Schwab PCRA can only be funded through transfers from your core investments. In order to access your PCRA online, you will first need to Web-activate the account on You’ll need your new account number that was provided to you during the enrollment process (and also in your Welcome Kit), as well as your Social Security number, home phone number and date of birth.


For more information about the Self-Directed Brokerage Account, click here.