Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
April 22nd, 2019

Risk Transfer Floodgates Hold, For Now

Even with the documented acceleration of de-risking activity, Tom McCartan at PGIM Fixed Income notes that less than 1% of U.S. private pension plan assets and liabilities have been formally transferred to insurers. Read more >
Benefits & Administration
Financial Incentives a Big Part of Employers’ Well-Being Program Budgets
Companies across the country are expected to spend an average of $3.6 million on physical well-being programs in 2019, according to a survey from Fidelity Investments and the National Business Group on Health. Read more >
Products, Deals and People
Investment Product and Service Launches
GSAM announces first actively managed ETF; Lyxor Americas launches hedge fund program for institutional investors; Sanctuary adds solutions division platform and members; and more. Read more >
Retirement Industry People Moves
FAF Board of Trustees Appoints PwC Partner to Financial Accounting Foundation; Broadridge Acquires Custody Assets From TD Ameritrade; Voya Financial Adds Support for Tax-Exempt Market; and more. Read more >
MOST READ ARTICLES
1
J.P. Morgan Agrees to Settle Stable Value Funds Suit
2
SECURE Act Passes House, Bringing Calls for Senate Collaboration
3
Individuals, Employers and Government All Play a Part in Retirement Readiness
4
Participant Loans: A Fiduciary Storm Brewing?
5
What to Know About Financial Audits Filed with Form 5500s
Sponsored message from Fidelity Investments
Fidelity's Student Debt Program: More than a perk, a purpose.
Now you can help your employees take control of their student debt. Read more >
Economic Events

The combined value of distributive trade sales and manufacturers’ shipments for February, adjusted for seasonal and trading day differences but not for price changes, was estimated at $1,446.8 billion, up 0.1% from January and up 2.4% from February 2018, the Census Bureau reported.

 

Advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for March, adjusted for seasonal variation and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $514.1 billion, an increase of 1.6% from the previous month, and 3.6% above March 2018. Total sales for the January through March period were up 2.9% from the same period a year ago. Retail trade sales were up 1.7% from February, and 3.5% above last year. Nonstore retailers were up11.6% from March 2018, while sporting goods, hobby, musical instrument, and book stores were down 9.7% from last year.

Privately‐owned housing starts in March were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,139,000. This is 0.3% below the revised February estimate of 1,142,000 and is 14.2% below the March 2018 rate of 1,327,000. Single‐family housing starts in March were at a rate of 785,000; this is 0.4% below the revised February figure of 788,000. The March rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 337,000.

 

THE ECONOMIC WEEK AHEAD: Today, the National Association of Realtors will report about existing home sales for March, and tomorrow, the Census Bureau will report about new home sales for March. Thursday, the Labor Department will issue its initial claims report, and the Census Bureau will report about durable goods orders for March.

Market Mirror

Thursday, the Dow gained 110.00 points (0.42%) to finish at 26,559.54, the NASDAQ was up 1.98 points (0.02%) at 7,998.06, and the S&P 500 closed 4.58 points (0.16%) higher at 2,905.03. The Russell 2000 was down 1.85 points (0.12%) at 1,565.75, and the Wilshire 5000 increased 37.50 points (0.13%) to 29,981.14.

 

The price of the 10-year Treasury note was up 9/32, decreasing its yield to 2.563%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond increased 22/32, bringing its yield down to 2.961%.

 

WEEK’S WORTH: For the week ending April 19, the Dow gained 0.56%, the NASDAQ increased 0.17%, and the S&P 500 was down 0.08%. The Russell 2000 fell 1.20%, and the Wilshire 5000 closed 0.26% lower.

Compliance
Current Legislation Missing the Mark on Annuity Safe Harbor
Speakers at a Brookings Institution event agreed that a financial strength criterion asking how sound is an annuity carrier should be a critical part in any annuity selection safe harbor for defined contribution (DC) plan sponsors. Read more >
Investing
‘Modern Tontine Theorists’ Have Ideas for Retirement Savings Decumulation
Tontines are a type of historical annuity structure that was first put into well-documented practice as far back as the 1600s. Read more >
Small Talk

ON THIS DATE: In 1861, Robert E. Lee was named commander of Virginia forces. In 1864, Congress passed legislation that allowed the inscription “In God We Trust” to be included on one-cent and two-cent coins. In 1889, at noon, the Oklahoma land rush officially started as thousands of Americans raced for new, unclaimed land. In 1898, the first shot of the Spanish-American war occurred when the USS Nashville captured a Spanish merchant ship. In 1944, during World War II, the Allies launched a major attack against the Japanese in Hollandia, New Guinea. In 1952, an atomic test conducted in Nevada was the first nuclear explosion shown on live network television. In 1970, the first “Earth Day” was observed by millions of Americans. In 1976, Barbara Walters became first female nightly network news anchor. In 1993, the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum was dedicated in Washington, D.C.

SURVEY SAYS RESPONSES: Last week, I asked NewsDash readers, “Is your company good at showing appreciation for your work?” I also asked, “What types of recognition do you like to receive from your employer?” Half of responding readers reported their company is “somewhat” good at showing appreciation, while 29.4% said there company is “not very” good at doing so. Nearly 15% of respondents said their company is “very” good at showing appreciation, and 5.9% indicated their company is “not at all” good at doing so. Asked, “Besides a salary increase or promotion, which of the following types of recognition do you like to receive from your employer?” a large majority (70.6%) chose “personal verbal recognition. This was followed by “a bonus,” selected by 52.9% of respondents, and “verbal recognition in a group setting,” selected by 44.1%. Some of the readers who chose to leave comments said money is what matters, while others said words of appreciation would be most appreciated. There was a mix between those who explained what their company does well and those who explained what their company does poorly. Editor’s Choice goes to the reader who said: “Things the company does are good but, genuine, individual acknowledgement by your leader, who really understands what you do daily is the most rewarding.” Thank you to all who participated in the survey! Read more >
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Editorial: Alison Cooke Mintzer alison.mintzer@strategic-i.com

Advertising: Paul Zampitella paul.zampitella@strategic-i.com

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