Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
December 13th, 2018
Benefits & Administration
Financial Professionals Improve Retirement Results for K-12 Educators
The median account balance for K-12 educators surveyed who work with a financial professional is $40,000 versus $21,000 for those who do not work with a financial professional, and 88% are confident in having a plan for retirement in place. Read more >
Minority of 401(k) Plan Sponsors Measure Retirement Readiness as Benchmark of Plan Success
Seventy-seven percent of 401(k) and profit sharing plan sponsors evaluate whether their retirement plans are successful, according to the Plan Sponsor Council of America (PSCA)’s 61st Annual Survey of Profit Sharing and 401(k) Plans. The survey finds the most used benchmarks for retirement plan success remain participation and deferral rates (90.8% and 75.8%, respectively), with only 31.4% using participant income replacement ratios as a success measure. Even among large plans, participation and deferral rates far outweigh retirement readiness as a benchmark for plan success. Read more >
Empower Finds Small Businesses Interested in Open MEPs
Of the 66% who responded in favor of the plans, 55% stated the likelihood of lowered costs for themselves is their top reason for supporting MEPs, while 54% said they were interested in reduced fees for employees. Read more >
MOST READ ARTICLES
1
IRS Announces 2019 HSA Contribution Limits
2
2019 ERISA Plan Compliance Calendar
3
Sponsors and Providers Use Too Much DC Plan Jargon
4
Effective Retirement Plan Communications Are Understandable and Accessible
5
Employees Report a Wide Range of Benefits Contribute to Financial Security
Products, Deals and People
Alegeus Starts ‘Smart HSA’ Initiative
The first component of the initiative is a portal that will help employers focus on the metrics that are most impactful to their bottom line and provide a clear course of action to capitalize on incremental opportunities. Read more >
Economic Events

In November, the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) was unchanged on a seasonally adjusted (SA) basis; rising 2.2% over the last 12 months, not seasonally adjusted (NSA), the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported. The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.2% in November, SA; up 2.2% over the year, NSA.

 

Real average hourly earnings increased 0.3% over the month in November, SA. Average hourly earnings increased 0.2% and CPI-U was unchanged. Real average weekly earnings decreased 0.1% over the month.

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Market Mirror

Wednesday, the Dow gained 157.03 points (0.64%) to finish at 24,527.27, the NASDAQ closed 66.48 points (0.95%) higher at 7,098.31, and the S&P 500 was up 14.29 points (0.54%) at 2,651.07. The Russell 2000 increased 15.19 points (1.05%) to 1,455.32, and the Wilshire 5000 climbed 162.09 points (0.60%) to 27,302.46.

 

The price of the 10-year Treasury note was down 10/32, increasing its yield to 2.914%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond decreased 15/32, bringing its yield up to 3.151%.

Compliance
Case Against ‘Small’ 401(k) Plan Settled
A $500,000 settlement has been reached in a lawsuit alleging that fiduciaries to the $500 million 401(k) program offered by Pioneer Natural Resources USA breached their Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) duties regarding investments and investment fees. According to the settlement agreement, released claims do not include the money market claim raised in the case, which will be dismissed without prejudice as a condition of settlement—meaning a new complaint could be filed. Read more >
$3M Settlement Reached in Edward Jones Self-Dealing Lawsuit
The parties in an Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) lawsuit alleging self-dealing by Edward Jones in its own 401(k) plan have reached a proposed settlement. Beyond self-dealing, the defendants are also accused of causing the plan to pay excessive recordkeeping and plan administration fees to the recordkeeper, Mercer HR Services, which is not a defendant in the case. Previously, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri, Eastern Division, had twice denied the brokerage company’s motions to dismiss. Read more >
Small Talk

ON THIS DATE: In 1577, five ships under the command of Sir Francis Drake left Plymouth, England, to embark on Drake’s circumnavigation of the globe. The journey took almost three years. In 1636, the United States National Guard was created when militia regiments were organized by the General Court of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. In 1769, Dartmouth College, in New Hampshire, received its charter. In 1862, an estimated 11,000 Northern soldiers were killed or wounded when Union forces were defeated by Confederates under General Robert E. Lee, at the Battle of Fredericksburg. In 1913, the Federal Reserve System was established. In 1964, in El Paso, Texas, President Lyndon Johnson and Mexican President Gustavo Diaz Ordaz set off an explosion that diverted the Rio Grande River, reshaping the U.S.-Mexican border. This ended a century-old border dispute. In 1991, North Korea and South Korea signed a historic non-aggression agreement. In 1998, Puerto Rican voters rejected U.S. statehood in a non-binding referendum. In 2001, the U.S. government released a video tape that showed Osama bin Laden and others discussing their knowledge of the terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11. In 2001, President George W. Bush served formal notice to Russia that the United States was withdrawing from the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty.

SURVEY SAYS: Last year, we fielded our favorite holiday movie survey, so this year it is time for our favorite holiday song survey. This week, I’d like to know, what is your favorite holiday song? You may respond to this week’s survey by 6 p.m. Pacific time today. 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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