Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
December 5th, 2017
Benefits & Administration
Spouses Play a Bigger Part in Retirement Planning
Put simply, spouses remain more influential than employers, Hearts & Wallets says, but the influence of the employer is much higher at firms with strong defined contribution (DC) businesses. The spouse of a married retirement saver inspires one out of five financial planning conversations, and this is growing. Read more >
Combination of Auto Features Improves Retirement Savings
Automatic enrollment is used by the majority, 60%, of all retirement plans, according to the Defined Contribution Institutional Investment Association’s (DCIIA’s) report, “DCIIA Fourth Biennial Plan Sponsor Survey: Auto Features Continue to Grow in Popularity.” Among plans with both automatic enrollment and escalation, 70% have participants saving 10% of more. Read more >
Industry Voices
Barry’s Pickings Online: The Limits of the “Science” of Prediction
Michael Barry, president of the Plan Advisory Services Group, discusses how the accounting measures for multiemployer plans contributed to their current crisis. Read more >
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The Senate Math That Could Block SECURE Act
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Open MEPs Not for Every Plan Sponsor
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Driving Financial Wellness at Work
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Pension Participants Claim ERISA Breaches in Dow DuPont Pension Transfer
Economic Events

New orders for manufactured durable goods in October decreased $2.8 billion or 1.2% to $236.0 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau announced. This decrease, down following two consecutive monthly increases, followed a 2.2% September increase. Excluding transportation, new orders increased 0.4%. Excluding defense, new orders decreased 0.8%. Transportation equipment, also down following two consecutive monthly increases, drove the decrease, $3.5 billion or 4.3% to $77.1 billion.

Market Mirror

Yesterday, the Dow closed 58.46 points (0.24%) higher at 24,290.05, the NASDAQ lost 72.22 points (1.05%) to finish at 6,775.37, and the S&P 500 was down 2.79 points (0.11%) at 2,639.43. The Russell 2000 decreased 4.61 points (0.30%) to 1,532.41, and the Wilshire 5000 closed 40.91 points (0.15%) lower at 27,407.10.

 

The price of the 10-year Treasury note and the price of the 30-year Treasury bond were each down 2/32, increasing their yields to 2.371% and 2.767%, respectively.

Sponsored message from Natixis
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Compliance
Senate Approves Own Version of Tax Reform
Each having passed their own version of the bill, the House and Senate now enter the conference committee phase, during which key legislators will attempt to craft a unified version of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. A few things seem clear so far, including that retirement plans are largely left alone by both bills. Read more >
Class Representatives Say J.P. Morgan Lawsuit Settlement Is Not Enough
Last month, J.P. Morgan agreed to pay $75 million to settle litigation accusing it of investing stable value funds in risky investments. Arguing that the motion for preliminary approval of the settlement should be denied, opposing representatives note that total class damages are either $532 million or $619 million, and that the class will not receive $75 million. Read more >
Union Fund Hit With Excessive Fee Suit
Similar to many excessive fee lawsuits filed against single-employer plans, the complaint accuses a multiemployer plan of failing to leverage its bargaining power to obtain lower investment and recordkeeping fees. Read more >
Investing
ETF Growth Trends Highlight ESG, Strategic Beta
The latest edition of an annual survey by Brown Brothers Harriman & Co., in partnership with ETF.com, which measures the expectations and preferences of “sophisticated ETF investors in the U.S.,” found greater interest in environmental, social and governance (ESG) exchange-traded funds (ETFs), with 51% of investors finding ESG at least somewhat important versus just 37% last year. Findings suggest the opportunity is ripe for smart beta ETF products, but more industry education is needed. Read more >
Small Talk

ON THIS DATE: In 1766, James Christie, founder of the famous auctioneers, held his first sale in London. In 1782, the first native U.S. president, Martin Van Buren, was born in Kinderhook, New York. In 1901, movie producer Walt Disney was born in Chicago. In 1908, at the University of Pittsburgh, numerals were first used on football uniforms worn by college football players. In 1933, prohibition came to an end when Utah became the 36th state to ratify the 21st Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. In 1945, the so-called “Lost Squadron” disappeared. The five U.S. Navy Avenger bombers carrying 14 Navy flyers began a training mission at the Ft. Lauderdale Naval Air Station. They were never heard from again. In 1955, the American Federation of Labor and the Congress of Industrial Organizations merged to form the AFL-CIO. In 1978, the American space probe Pioneer Venus I, orbiting Venus, began beaming back its first information and picture of the planet. In 1983, the video arcade game “NFL Football” was unveiled in Chicago. It was the first video arcade game to be licensed by the National Football League. In 2010, NASA’s Mars Odyssey spacecraft became the longest-operating spacecraft ever sent to Mars. It entered orbit around Mars on October 23, 2001.

TRIVIAL PURSUITS: Are certain tastes detected by certain parts of the tongue? 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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