Too much choice is often unhelpful. Those endless menus in some Chinese restaurants in particular turn pleasurable indecision into an annoying chore. It is the same with pension schemes: faced with 50 or more funds to choose from, members of defined contribution pension schemes are most likely to give up and go for the default fund.
A survey by Watson Wyatt finds schemes run by trustees much less likely to overdo fund choice than those provided on a contract basis, typically by life insurance companies. Two thirds of contract-based DC schemes provided by FTSE 100 companies offer 50 or more fund choices, while the same proportion of trust-based schemes offer 10 or less funds.