Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
August 9th, 2019
Benefits & Administration
Case Studies Suggest Move From Public Pensions Hurts Taxpayers
Experiences of four states that moved from traditional defined benefit (DB) plans to cash balance or defined contribution (DC) plans show it did not address existing pension underfunding and increased costs for these states.Read more >
Products, Deals and People
Investment Product and Service Launches
Northern Trust builds portfolio analytics tool; Transamerica lowers multiple investment fund fees; Mesirow Financial issues U.S. small cap sustainability vehicle; and more.Read more >
Sponsored message from Northern Trust
How a Custodian Started Up a Fintech Solution for CIOs
Learn how Northern Trust Front Office Solutions developed a data integration solution for CIOs.Read more >
2022 Recordkeeping Survey
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: How Many States Are in More Than One Time Zone?
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: Which are the most northern, southern, eastern and western U.S. States?
Defined Benefit Plans May Have New Life
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: Meaning and Origin of the Idiom “Watershed Moment?”
Economic Events

June sales of merchant wholesalers, except manufacturers’ sales branches and offices, after adjustment for seasonal variations and trading day differences but not for price changes, were $498.5 billion, down 0.3% from the revised May level and down 0.2% from the June 2018 level, the Census Bureau announced. The April to May percent change was revised from the preliminary estimate of up 0.1% to down 0.6%.

In the week ending August 3, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims for unemployment insurance was 209,000, a decrease of 8,000 from the previous week’s revised level of 217,000, the Labor Department reported. The four-week moving average was 212,250, an increase of 250 from the previous week’s revised average of 212,000.

The average interest rate for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage is 3.6%, down from 3.75% one week ago, according to Freddie Mac. The average interest rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage is 3.05%, down from 3.2%.

Market Mirror

Thursday, the Dow gained 371.12 points (1.43%) to finish at 26,378.19, the NASDAQ closed 176.33 points (2.24%) higher at 8,039.16, and the S&P 500 increased 54.11 points (1.88%) to 2,938.09. The Russell 2000 was up 31.45 points (2.10%) at 1,532.13, and the Wilshire 5000 climbed 571.92 points (1.93%) to 30,177.76.

The price of the 10-year Treasury note decreased 13/32, bringing its yield up to 1.714%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond increased 28/32, bringing its yield down to 2.227%.

Court Issues Mixed Ruling in Case Over ESOP Stock Purchase
The court decision highlights the difficulty in determining the fiduciary status of parties and of making claims for equitable relief based on allegations that ESOP stock purchases were overvalued.Read more >
From the Magazine
Recordkeeper Add-Ons
Fee litigation, 408b-2 disclosures and the Department of Labor (DOL)’s focus on fees over the past few years have led to a decrease in recordkeeping fees for plans. That’s good news for plan participants and plan sponsors. But what about the recordkeepers? They are still for-profit businesses that need to generate income, and if they are making less on plan recordkeeping services it’s only reasonable to expect them to find a way to compensate. As recordkeepers develop alternative means to generate income, plan committees should be aware of what this means for participants and for their own fiduciary duties.Read more >
Small Talk

ON THIS DATE: In 1831, the first steam locomotive began its first trip between Schenectady and Albany, New York. In 1848, Martin Van Buren was nominated for president by the Free-Soil Party in Buffalo, New York. In 1859, the escalator was patented by Nathan Ames. In 1892, Thomas Edison received a patent for a two-way telegraph. In 1936, Jesse Owens won his fourth gold medal at the Berlin Olympics. He was the first American to win four medals in one Olympics. In 1944, the Forest Service and Wartime Advertising Council created “Smokey the Bear.” In 1945, the U.S. dropped an atomic bomb on Nagasaki, Japan, three days after the bombing of Hiroshima. About 74,000 people were killed. In 1973, the Senate committee investigating the Watergate affair filed suit against President Richard Nixon. In 1974, President Richard Nixon formally resigned. Gerald R. Ford took his place, and became the 38th president of the U.S. In 2004, Donald Duck received the 2,257th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In 2004, Trump Hotel and Casion Resorts announced plans to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.


And now it’s time for FRIDAY FILES!

Singing donkeys.Read more >
It took a while, but the dog’s plan for fetching worked.Read more >
In Talmont-Saint-Hilaire, France, an oyster farm is refusing to sell a giant oyster felt underfoot by an employee. The oyster weighs 3.2 pounds and is 10 inches long, and the employees named it Georgette, in honor of a retiring worker. [pic]Read more >

In Ashland, Oregon, no doubt a man felt panicked when he realized he had accidentally thrown a shoebox with $23,000 inside into the recycle bin. By the time he realized his mistake, the recycling bin had already been emptied into a truck bound for the sorting facility. The Santa Rosa Press-Democrat reports facility workers were told to be on the lookout for the box. Fortunately, someone spotted the box down the sorting line and recovered all but $320.

In Glasgow, Scotland, scientists at the University of Glasgow revealed they have come up with an artificial “tongue” which can distinguish subtle differences between whiskies. The technology can identify a host of different chemicals within a complex mixture. The AFP reports it could be used not only for quality control but also to combat the booming counterfeit alcohol trade.

In Vienna, Australia, four aromas—including “energising” grapefruit and “relaxing” melon—were tested in several carriages on two subway lines in the Austrian capital during July. But, commuters voted against the plan to enhance their travel experience in an online survey after a month-long trial.

In Port Charlotte, Florida, a woman told television station WINK News that the sole toilet in her Port Charlotte home was shattered into hundreds of pieces on Sunday. She said the explosion was the loudest sound she’s ever heard, and that she also smelled smoke. A plumber told her lightning hit the methane gas that was built up in the pipes from feces. Who knew that could happen?

Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend!

Share the news with a friend! Pass the NewsDash along and tell your friends/associates they can sign up for their own copy.Read more >

Editorial: Alison Cooke Mintzer


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