Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
April 7th, 2015
2015 Best in Class 401(k) Plans
2015 Best in Class 401(k) Plans
PLANSPONSOR is pleased to announce its inaugural selection of companies for its Best in Class 401(k) Plans designation. Recipients of the 2015 Best in Class 401(k) Plans designation were selected from more than 4,500 plans responding to PLANSPONSOR’s annual Defined Contribution (DC) Survey. 401(k) plans were evaluated and scored on more than 30 criteria related to plan design, oversight/governance, and participant outcomes.Read more >
Benefits & Administration
The funded status of the typical U.S. corporate pension plan declined 0.4 percentage points in March to 87.2%, according to the BNY Mellon Investment Strategy and Solutions Group (ISSG). The BNY Mellon Institutional Scorecard showed that for the typical U.S. corporate plan, assets in March decreased 0.5%, while liabilities fell 0.1% as the Aa corporate discount rate rose two basis points to 3.86%. Public plans and foundations and endowments also saw assets decrease.Read more >
What American investors say they will do and what they actually wind up doing to save for retirement shows a big gap, according to an Edward Jones retirement age survey. Nearly half (45%) of non-retired Americans are not saving for retirement. Of those not yet saving, only 36% plan to do so in the future and nearly 10% say they never plan on saving for retirement.Read more >
Products, Deals & People
Retirement and benefit consulting and administration firm, USI Consulting Group announces an addition to its retirement services team. Based in Oak Brook, Illinois, Lou Ressler has joined the team as vice president.Read more >
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Market Mirror

EDITOR’S NOTE: The stock market results in yesterday’s NewsDash were for Thursday, April 2, not Friday, April 3, as the stock market was closed Friday.

Yesterday, the Dow gained 117.61 points (0.66%) to finish at 17,880.85, the NASDAQ increased 30.38 points (0.62%) to 4,917.32, and the S&P 500 climbed 14.75 points (0.71%) to 2,081.71. The Russell 2000 was up 4.88 points (0.39%) at 1,260.54, and the Wilshire 5000 closed 136.54 points (0.62%) higher at 22,083.17.

On the NYSE, 3.2 billion shares traded, with a more than 2 to 1 lead for advancers. On the NASDAQ, 2.8 billion shares changed hands, with 1.2 advancing issues for every declining issue.

The price of the 10-year Treasury note decreased 16/32, bringing its yield up to 1.898%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond fell 1 14/32, increasing its yield to 2.557%.

Compliance
IRS Answers Questions About Reference Lists
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has made available frequently asked questions (FAQs) about reference lists of changes in qualification requirements for retirement plans. In February, the agency announced it offers fillable reference lists as tools to help plan sponsors ensure that their plan document incorporates all relevant mandatory and optional changes in plan qualification requirements.Read more >
Reminder About Distributions to Foreign Persons
Sponsors of U.S. retirement plans must generally withhold 30% from a plan distribution paid to a foreign payee unless the plan sponsor can reliably associate the payment with valid documentation that establishes the payee is a U.S. person or a foreign person entitled to a rate of withholding lower than 30%. On an updated page on its website, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) says documentation can include Form W-9, Form W-8BEN, or other appropriate sources.Read more >
Not Forwarding Contributions and Loans Costs Fiduciaries
A court judgment received by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) orders retirement plan fiduciaries to restore $485,560.77 to plan participants. In 1984, Fletcher-Thompson, Inc., an architectural, engineering and interior design firm headquartered in Bridgeport, Connecticut, established The Fletcher-Thompson Savings Plan to provide retirement benefits for its employees. An investigation by the DOL’s Employee Benefit Security Administration (EBSA) found that, beginning in 2008, the company became delinquent in remitting employee deferrals and loan repayments to the plan.Read more >
Investing
Market Timing Among Costliest Participant Mistakes
Effectively timing equity markets is extremely difficult to do, and over the long term, emotional decisionmaking during market lows can rob investors of huge portions of potential returns. During a recent research briefing with J.P. Morgan Asset Management, some of the firm’s top retirement strategists highlighted a stark statistic about the impact of emotional decisionmaking on portfolio returns: ill-timed trading can easily cut 50% or more of participant wealth if not identified and prevented. As David Kelly, J.P. Morgan’s chief global strategist, explains, the difference between a $65,450 balance over 10 years on a $10,000 initial investment and a $32,650 balance in the same time period is just 10 days. In other words, the top-10 days of returns for a decade can bring in as much as half of the gross positive daily returns generated.Read more >
Small Talk

ON THIS DATE: In 1930, the first steel columns were set for the Empire State Building. In 1933, prohibition ended in the United States. In 1947, Henry Ford, the founder of Ford Motor Company, which developed the first affordable, mass-produced car–the Model T–and also helped pioneer assembly-line manufacturing, died at his estate in Dearborn, Michigan, at the age of 83. In 1948, the musical “South Pacific” by Rodgers and Hammerstein debuted on Broadway. In 1953, IBM unveiled the IBM 701 Electronic Data Processing Machine. It was IBM’s first commercially available scientific computer. In 1963, at the age of 23, Jack Nicklaus became the youngest golfer to win the Green Jacket at the Masters Tournament. In 1970, John Wayne won his first and only Oscar for his role in “True Grit.” In 2000, U.S. President Clinton signed the Senior Citizens Freedom to Work Act of 2000. The bill reversed a Depression-era law and allows senior citizens to earn money without losing Social Security retirement benefits.

 

TUESDAY TRIVIA: The Empire State Building was designed by William F. Lamb from the architectural firm Shreve, Lamb and Harmon, in part using its earlier designs for the Reynolds Building in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. To acknowledge its ‘lineage’ from the Reynolds Building, the staff of the Empire State Building sends an annual Father’s Day card to the staff at the Reynolds Building. 

TRIVIAL PURSUITS: Have you ever been unable to remember a word or put your finger on the right word? Well, there’s a word for that—do you know what it is?Read more >
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Editorial: Alison Cooke Mintzer alison.mintzer@strategic-i.com

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