Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
December 15th, 2015
Benefits & Administration
Study Quantifies Occurrence of Pension Risk Transfer
A Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) study of defined benefit (DB) plans with more than 1,000 participants found 534 had some kind of risk transfer activity in the years 2009 to 2013. This number includes 145 cash balance plans, 135 collectively bargained plans, and 399 other DB plans. Fifty of those 534 plans went through a standard termination—which the researchers call the “ultimate form of risk transfer.” More than one million participants left the plans as a result of the events.Read more >
Discussing the preliminary results of an analysis of Governor Dannel Malloy’s proposals for funding Connecticut’s largest pension plans, State Treasurer Denise L. Nappier supported reform that would phase in a reduction of the investment return assumption, from 8% to 7%, in order to conform more realistically to expectations for how capital markets will perform going forward. However, Nappier made clear that whatever investment return assumption is used, there is “no investment strategy that would, in and of itself, allow us to earn our way out from under these unfunded liabilities.”Read more >
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Multiemployer Plan Numbers Can Be Deceiving
For multiemployer pension plans with zone certification filing deadlines in the 12 months between October 1, 2014 and September 30, 2015, Segal Consulting found nearly two-thirds (64%) are in the “green zone.” While only one-quarter of plans are in the red zone, those plans account for half of participants.Read more >
Market Mirror

A late burst of buying left most U.S. stock indices higher yesterday, after a day of wavering between small gains and losses, according to the Associated Press. The Dow climbed 103.29 points (0.60%) to 17,368.50, the NASDAQ increased 18.76 points (0.38%) to 4,952.23, and the S&P 500 closed 9.76 points (0.49%) higher at 2,022.13. The Russell 2000 fell 7.76 points (0.69%) to 1,115.85, and the Wilshire 5000 gained 64.61 points (0.31%) to finish at 20,724.20.

On the NYSE, 3.2 billion shares changed hands, with a near 3 to 1 lead for decliners. On the NASDAQ, 2.7 billion shares traded, with 1.7 declining issues for every advancing issue.

The price of the 10-year Treasury note decreased 28/32, bringing its yield up to 2.223%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond fell 1 23/32, increasing its yield to 2.957%.
Sponsored message from MetLife
Money Market Fund Reforms: Practical Implications for Qualified Retirement Plans
Insight into the practical implications of the rules for DB and DC qualified plan sponsors and their plans.Read more >
Compliance
Don’t Wait to Enforce Liens on Plan Overpayments
Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) attorney Nancy Ross explains why it’s essential for plan sponsors to understand how liens work under ERISA—and how an upcoming Supreme Court case could change just that.Read more >
Bill Aims to Improve Women’s Retirement
Representative Jan Schakowsky (D-Illinois) and Senator Patty Murray (D-Washington) introduced The Women’s Pension Protection Act, which would increase spousal protections and improve retirement plan coverage for long-term part-time workers, among other things.Read more >
From the Magazine
Are State Plans the Answer?
Michael Barry, president of the Plan Advisory Services Group, discusses legal obstacles and his two reservations about state-run retirement plans for private-sector workers.Read more >
Investing
Though most trading days in November favored fixed income, large U.S. equity funds received the most inflows from defined contribution (DC) participant transfers.Read more >
New research from Strategic Insight shows net redemptions from long-term mutual funds and exchange-traded products totaled $4.8 billion in November.Read more >
Small Talk
ON THIS DATE: In 1791, in the U.S., the first ten amendments to the Constitution, known as the Bill of Rights, went into effect following ratification by the state of Virginia. In 1854, in Philadelphia, the first street cleaning machine was put into use. In 1877, Thomas Edison patented the phonograph. In 1890, American Sioux Indian Chief Sitting Bull and 11 other tribe members were killed in Grand River, South Dakota, during an incident with Indian police working for the U.S. government. In 1938, U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt presided over the ground-breaking ceremonies for the Jefferson Memorial in Washington, D.C. In 1939, “Gone With the Wind” premiered at Loew’s Grand Theater in Atlanta. In 1966, Walter Elias “Walt” Disney died in Los Angeles at the age of 65. In 2000, the Chernobyl atomic power plant in Kiev, Ukraine, was shut down.
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: An X-ray machine sends individual particles through the body, and the images are recorded on a computer or film. Why are the rays that send these particles called “X-rays?”Read more >
Share the good news with a friend! Pass the Dash along – and tell your friends/associates they can sign up for their own copy.Read more >

Editorial: Alison Cooke Mintzer alison.mintzer@strategic-i.com

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