Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
August 18th, 2017
Benefits & Administration
Financial Wellness Programs Should Build Employee Confidence
An effective financial wellness program is not just about financial literacy; it’s about building the employee’s confidence in tackling financial tasks, suggests a study by Mercer.  Read more >
Disease Management Important to Controlling Health Benefit Costs
Employers reported certain diseases/conditions have a big impact on health plan costs, according to the Workplace Wellness Trends 2017 survey from the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans (IFEBP). Respondents commonly offer disease management programs (48.1%) and case management (39.6%), a patient care model focusing on coordinating medical services for individuals.  Read more >
EARN Act Clears Senate Finance Committee
Plaintiffs Rebuffed by Appeals Court in Active Management Lawsuit
2021 Recordkeeping Survey
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: How Many States Are in More Than One Time Zone?
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: Meaning and Origin of the Idiom “Watershed Moment?”
Products, Deals and People
T. Rowe Price Funds Added to Schwab Mutual Fund OneSource Select List
T. Rowe Price Group announced that 25 of its mutual funds have been chosen by Charles Schwab Investment Advisory to be on the 2017 quarter three Schwab Mutual Fund OneSource Select List. Among the funds added are retirement target-date funds (TDFs), the Equity Income Fund and the Small-Cap Value Fund.  Read more >
Morningstar Tool Weighs Investment and Billed Plan Expenses
Paul Ellenbogen, head of global regulatory solutions at Morningstar, says the latest cost benchmarking solution from his firm will supply “valuable baseline information when comparing a qualified plan with a possible individual retirement account (IRA) rollover.” The tool found that, for the most part, the investment management expenses plans pay are significantly greater than additional billed expenses, and are generally between 85% and 90% of the total cost of the plan.  Read more >
Economic Events

In the week ending August 12, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims for unemployment insurance was 232,000, a decrease of 12,000 from the previous week’s unrevised level of 244,000, the Labor Department reported. The four-week moving average was 240,500, a decrease of 500 from the previous week’s unrevised average of 241,000. 

The average interest rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is 3.89%, down from 3.90% one week ago, according to Freddie Mac. The average interest rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage is 3.16%, down from 3.18%.

Market Mirror

Thursday, the Dow lost 274.14 points (1.24%) to finish at 21,750.73, the NASDAQ closed 123.19 points (1.94%) lower at 6221,91, and the S&P 500 decreased 38.10 points (1.54%) to 2,430.01. The Russell 2000 was down 24.60 points (1.78%) at 1,358.93, and the Wilshire 5000 fell 392.43 points (1.54%) to 25,154.27.

The price of the 10-year Treasury note increased 11/32, bringing its yield down to 2.187%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond climbed 20/32, decreasing its yield to 2.776%.

Actuaries Propose Simplified Pension Funding Notices
The Annual Funding Notice requirements implemented by the Pension Protection Act (PPA) have been somewhat helpful but could be significantly improved, according to the American Academy of Actuaries.  Read more >
Tibble vs. Edison Plaintiffs Win the Latest Decision in District Court
The latest ruling in Tibble vs. Edison comes out of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, applying the now-famous “distinct duty to monitor” standard set forth by the U.S. Supreme Court on an appeal of the very same litigation. The ruling examines in detail the process surrounding the adoption of 14 mutual funds that the plaintiffs contend should have been switched by the defendants from retail to institutional shares.  Read more >
Small Talk
ON THIS DATE: In 1587, Virginia Dare became the first child to be born on American soil of English parents. The colony that is now Roanoke Island, North Carolina, mysteriously vanished. In 1735, the “Evening Post” of Boston was published for the first time. In 1840, the American Society of Dental Surgeons was founded in New York City. In 1894, the Bureau of Immigration was established by the U.S. Congress. In 1914, the “Proclamation of Neutrality” was issued by U.S. President Woodrow Wilson. It was aimed at keeping the U.S. out of World War I. In 1916, Abraham Lincoln’s birthplace was made into a national shrine. In 1920, Tennessee ratified the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The Amendment guaranteed the right of all American women to vote. In 1940, Canada and the U.S. established a joint defense plan against the possible enemy attacks during World War II. In 1966, the first pictures of earth taken from moon orbit were sent back to the U.S. In 1982, the longest baseball game played at Wrigley Field in Chicago went 21 innings before the Los Angeles Dodgers defeated the Cubs 2-1. In 1992, Larry Bird, after 13 years with the Boston Celtics, announced his retirement. In 1997, Beth Ann Hogan became the first coed in the Virginia Military Institute’s 158-year history. In 1997, Patrick Swayze received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.  SURVEY SAYS: I realize it is vacation time, so I’m going to hold open this week’s survey for another day. With an increase in workers taking on ‘gig’ jobs, the question is how to ensure they have the opportunity to save for retirement and are protected from high health benefit costs. This week, I’d like to know, do you know someone working a ‘gig’ job, and do they receive health and/or retirement benefits? Responses will be published in an upcoming issue of PLANSPONSOR magazine.  Read more >
And now it’s time for FRIDAY FILES!
This dog’s Frisbee miss didn’t fare well for the guy holding the camera.Read more >
This chicken, not once, but twice, gets his bread treat stuck around his neck. (May want to mute due to annoying laughter).  Read more >
In Malmedy, Belgium, the town has turned nearly 10,000 eggs into a giant omelet for the whole community. Cooks and volunteers whipped up the massive concoction using enormous wooden utensils, an oversized and oiled pan, bacon and green onions. According to the Associated Press, they then distributed it to the public. It’s an annual event in the town of Malmedy that took on greater meaning this year, as several European countries have reported receiving eggs or egg products contaminated by a pesticide. No one has fallen ill from the eggs and health risk is considered low. [pic]  Read more >
In Alberta, Canada, a Canadian woman lost her engagement ring 13 years ago while weeding her garden on the family farm. But, her daughter-in-law found the ring recently while harvesting carrots for supper. According to the Associated Press, a carrot actually grew through and around the diamond ring the woman had long given up hope of finding. [pic]  Read more >

In Munich, Germany, a man has found a faster way to get to work without all the traffic hassles. According to Reuters, he used to go to work via bus, bike, car or on foot, but now he swims there. The beer garden worker now packs his laptop and clothes into a waterproof bag which he puts on his back, dons his wetsuit and slides into the River Isar for his journey. He admits that he does this mostly in the summer, as the river water is very cold in winter.

In Danvers, Massachusetts, police received several calls about an alligator along Route 128. When they went to investigate, they found it was a foot-and-a-half plastic toy discarded by the side of the road.

Somewhere in Australia, in a bit of irony, a man bought a Rolls-Royce a couple of weeks ago, but decided the parking garage at his luxury apartments was not secure enough to protect his prize. He a custom cage built surrounding his parking space to protect the vehicle. However, the man had trouble navigating in and out of the cage and ended up driving into one of the cage’s support poles and walls, causing a large amount of damage to the car.

In Aptos, California, in another bit of irony, an into.xicated man lost control of his vehicle on a highway, ran over a road sign, careened up an embankment, flipped and landed on the roof of the car. He survived the crash. The sign he ran over: “Report drunk drivers Call 911.”


Have a happy weekend!

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Editorial: Alison Cooke Mintzer


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