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PLANSPONSOR NEWSDASH LOGO April 3rd, 2020
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Benefits
Employers Can Offer More Student Loan Repayment Help to Employees
The CARES Act allows employers to contribute toward employees’ student loan debt tax-free to employees, and employees need guidance on what they can and should do about deferring payments.
Coronavirus News for Plan Sponsors
PLANSPONSOR has created a special page on our website with the latest coronavirus-related news about market volatility, benefits and business updates, and legislative and regulatory actions.
Most Read
Compliance
Supreme Court Decision in Thole v. U.S. Bank Has Major Implications for Pensions
Compliance
Heroes Act Now In the Hands of a Skeptical Senate
Compliance
Court Finds Plan Sponsor Could Be Found Liable for Retirement Plan Cyberfraud
Economic Events
New orders for manufactured durable goods in February increased $2.9 billion or 1.2% to $249.4 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau announced. This increase, up four of the last five months, followed a 0.1% January increase. Excluding transportation, new orders decreased 0.6%. Excluding defense, new orders increased 0.1%. Transportation equipment, up two of the last three months, drove the increase, $3.8 billion or 4.6% to $87.0 billion.

The interest rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.33% for the week ending April 2, down from last week when it averaged 3.50%, according to Freddie Mac. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 4.08%. The interest rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 2.82%, down from last week when it averaged 2.92%. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 3.56%.

In the week ending March 28, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims for unemployment insurance was 6,648,000, an increase of 3,341,000 from the previous week’s revised level of 3,307,000, the Labor Department reported. This marks the highest level of seasonally adjusted initial claims in the history of the seasonally adjusted series. The four-week moving average was 2,612,000, an increase of 1,607,750 from the previous week’s revised average of 1,004,250.
Market Mirror
Thursday, the Dow gained 469.93 points (2.24%) to finish at 21,413.44, the NASDAQ increased 126.73 points (1.72%) to 7,487.31, and the S&P 500 climbed 56.40 points (2.28%) to 2,526.90. The Russell 2000 was up 13.81 points (1.29%) at 1,085.81, and the Wilshire 5000 closed 488.51 points (1.98%) higher at 25,199.65.

The price of the 10-year Treasury note was down 5/32, increasing its yield to 0.632%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond decreased 1 1/32, bringing its yield up to 1.262%.
Administration
Administrative Considerations for CARES Act Transactions
Plan sponsors need to understand the details and ask themselves certain questions to make sure they are complying with the new law.
Products
Empower Waives Fees for Retirement Plan Loans and Hardship Withdrawals
The change is for all tax-qualified workplace retirement plans administered by Empower that permit such distributions and includes new provisions allowed for under the CARES Act.
Small Talk
ON THIS DATE: In 1776, George Washington received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Harvard College. In 1860, the first Pony Express mail, traveling by horse and rider relay teams, simultaneously left St. Joseph, Missouri, and Sacramento, California. Ten days later, on April 13, the westbound rider and mail packet completed the approximately 1,800-mile journey and arrived in Sacramento, beating the eastbound packet’s arrival in St. Joseph by two days and setting a new standard for speedy mail delivery. In 1948, President Harry Truman signed the Marshall Plan to revive war-torn Europe. It was $5 billion in aid for 16 countries. In 1949, Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis debuted on radio on the “Martin and Lewis Show.” In 1953, “TV Guide” was published for the first time. In 1968, Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his “mountaintop” speech just 24 hours before he was assassinated. In 1993, the Norman Rockwell Museum opened in Stockbridge, Massachusetts. In 1996, at his small wilderness cabin near Lincoln, Montana, Theodore John Kaczynski was arrested by FBI agents and accused of being the Unabomber, the elusive terrorist blamed for 16 mail bombs that killed three people and injured 23 during an 18-year period. In 2010, the first Apple iPad was released.
In this special edition of FRIDAY FUN, we highlight stories of help and hope during the novel coronavirus pandemic.

We at PLANSPONSOR are very grateful to medical professionals and the essential employees who are taking care of us and helping us take care of ourselves during this trying time. Hoping everyone has a great weekend. Stay safe and be kind.
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