2013 Defined Benefit Administration Survey
Twenty years ago, in the pages of the inaugural issue of PLANSPONSOR, a cautionary note appeared: Although “defined contribution plans are sweeping the nation,” the story said, it was “not yet clear whether anyone can save 401(k) investors from themselves.”
What Developments Most Influenced the Retirement Plan Industry?
Each month, Bells & Whistles highlights recent product introductions that plan sponsors may find of interest.
The evolution of the retirement plan industry
At the 2013 PLANSPONSOR/PLANADVISER Awards for Excellence, the annual PLANSPONSOR Lifetime Achievement Award was given to Joe Mansueto, chairman and CEO of Morningstar Inc.
Charles Ruffel is the founder and director of Asset International, Inc., parent company of PLANSPONSOR and PLANADVISER.
Some quotes, survey statistics and musings to use in employee communications, or just as a break in the grind.
DC plan investments offer plan participants a path to retirement savings
“Ten thousand Baby Boomers are turning 65 every day,” says Catherine Collinson, president of the Los Angeles-based Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies. “It is a problem begging to be solved.”
Over the past 20 years, we have come almost full circle in retirement plans’ use of asset-allocation funds, says Laurie Nordquist, an executive vice president and director at Wells Fargo Institutional Retirement and Trust, a unit of San Francisco-based Wells Fargo Bank.
“Everybody is always trying to talk about the demise of stable value,” says Chris Tobe, principal at Louisville, Kentucky-based Stable Value Consultants.
Navigating the many steps in DC retirement plan administration
The 401(k) defined contribution (DC) plan has its origins as part of the 1978 Tax Reform Act, where it languished in obscurity until 1980, when benefits consultant Ted Benna took note of the provisions and determined how they opened the door to creating a tax-advantaged way to save for retirement.
If you could step into a time machine and go back to 1993, says Trisha Brambley, president of Retirement Playbook Inc. in New Hope, Pennsylvania, you would see a very different kind of adviser supporting retirement plans—“and we’d all have bigger hair.”
As some advisers have become increasingly focused on supporting plan sponsors—and, hence, their scope of advisory work has narrowed—the responsibilities they engage in for retirement plans have increased, becoming more nuanced and detailed.
Finding the best options in a field of DC plan designs
Some might say that retirement plan design has come full circle.
Education for 401(k) participants has changed considerably in 20 years.
The big news in defined contribution (DC) distribution options for the last year is that there really is no news.
How DB investment selection can change plan outcomes
There has been a major shift in how defined benefit (DB) plans distribute benefits.
Risk transfer is on the minds of many defined benefit (DB) plan sponsors, but, with the current economic environment, it is more often planned for than actually done, says Jack Abraham, principal and leader of the PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) Human Resource Services retirement practice in Chicago.
In the aftermath of the financial shake-up five years ago, many defined benefit (DB) plan sponsors ended or paused their securities lending activities.
For pension plans, allocation to alternative investments often comes down to diversification of equity risk while trying to meet their assumed rates of return.
Technology is not just something that provides a competitive edge for defined benefit (DB) custodians—it has become the essence of their survival.