Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
February 6th, 2017
Halt of Fiduciary Rule Could Mean More Work for Plan Sponsors
The Department of Labor (DOL) has been ordered by President Donald Trump to review its fiduciary rule, which could result in a delay in implementation or even a reversal of the regulation. Industry experts have opined that if the fiduciary rule is rolled back, it will actually put more pressure, not less, on plan sponsors to ensure they are meeting their own required duties.Read more >
IRS Releases Updated Form 990-EZ for Tax-Exempts
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has released an updated Form 990-EZ, Short Form Return of Organization Exempt From Income Tax, that will help tax-exempt organizations avoid common mistakes when filing their annual return. Tax-exempt organizations that do not fill out the form could lose qualified status to sponsor 403(b) plans.Read more >
New Financial Audit Rule Increases Requirements for Plan Sponsors
2021 Recordkeeping Survey
2021 Plan Sponsor of the Year
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: What do the M’s stand for in M&Ms?
DOL Proposes New Rule on ESG Investing in Retirement Plans
Case About Domestic Partner’s Right to Pension Proceeds
A federal district court has moved forward a case alleging a pension plan participant was not fully informed of his rights to a joint and survivor annuity upon retirement, in violation of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). A motion to dismiss, claiming that a domestic partner’s claims for benefits as well as a surcharge were duplicative, was denied.Read more >
Products, Deals and People
Retirement Industry People Moves
OneAmerica appoints head of Guaranteed Income Products; Empower Retirement names leader of Government Market Segment; New partner Joins ESOP-focused law firm; and more.Read more >
Associations Promote Increased Retirement Data Standardization
DTCC’s Retirement Plan Reporting solution provides increased transparency for fee disclosure compliance requirements.Read more >
Sponsored message from Morgan Stanley
Boutique experience + world-class resources
At Graystone Consulting, we take a highly thoughtful, disciplined approach to empower you to manage complexity and align your goals with your investments. Each solution is as unique as your organization.Read more >
Economic Events

New orders for manufactured durable goods in December, down two consecutive months, decreased $1.1 billion or 0.5% to $227.1 billion, down from the previously published 0.4% decrease, the Census Bureau reported. This followed a 4.7% November decrease. Transportation equipment, also down two consecutive months, drove the decrease, $1.9 billion or 2.5% to $73.5 billion. New orders for manufactured nondurable goods increased $7.2 billion or 3.1% to $237.8 billion.

Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 227,000 in January, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 4.8%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Job gains occurred in retail trade, construction, and financial activities.

THE ECONOMIC WEEK AHEAD: Thursday, the Labor Department will issue its initial claims report, and the Census Bureau will report about wholesale trade for December.
Market Mirror

Friday, the Dow closed 186.55 points (0.94%) higher at 20,071.46, the NASDAQ was up 30.57 points 90.54%) at 5,666.77, and the S&P 500 increased 16.57 points (0.73%) to 2,297.42. The Russell 2000 climbed 20.40 points (1.50%) to 1,377.83, and the Wilshire 5000 gained 201.71 points (0.85%) to finish at 24,052.79.

On the NYSE, 3.1 billion shares traded, with advancing issues outnumbering declining issues more than 3 to 1. On the NASDAQ, 3.0 billion shares changed hand, with a nearly 3 to 1 lead for advancers.

The price of the 10-year Treasury note was up 1/32, decreasing its yield to 2.472%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond was down 4/32, increasing its yield to 3.097%.

WEEK’S WORTH: For the week ending February 3, the Dow was down 0.11%, the NASDAQ was up 0.11%, and the S&P 500 increased 0.12%. The Russell 2000 gained 0.52%, and the Wilshire 5000 finished 0.18% higher.
Small Talk
ON THIS DATE: In 1788, Massachusetts became the sixth state to ratify the U.S. Constitution. In 1899, the U.S. Senate ratified a peace treaty between the U.S. and Spain. In 1911, the first old-age home for pioneers opened in Prescott, Arizona. In 1926, the National Football League adopted a rule that made players ineligible for competition until their college class graduated. In 1933, the 20th Amendment to the Constitution was declared in effect. The amendment moved the start of presidential, vice-presidential and congressional terms from March to January. In 1971, NASA Astronaut Alan B. Shepard used a six-iron that he had brought inside his spacecraft and swung at three golf balls on the surface of the moon. In 1987, President Ronald Reagan turned 76 years old and became the oldest U.S. President in history. In 1998, Washington National Airport was renamed for U.S. President Ronald Reagan with the signing of a bill by U.S. President Bill Clinton.
SURVEY SAYS RESPONSES: Last week, I asked NewsDash readers, “Do YOU feel financially well? What kind of financial wellness help could you use, and does your company offer overall financial wellness education/tools for employees?” Asked if they feel financially well, more than half (51.8%) of readers said yes, 29.6% chose “somewhat” and 18.5% said no. Preparing for spending in retirement (57.7%) was the top-picked financial wellness help readers said they could use. This was followed by saving for health care (38.5%) and establishing an estate plan (34.6%). Sixty-three percent of readers indicated their firms offer financial wellness education/tools, and 37% reported their firms do not. In verbatim comments, readers touted the provision of financial wellness education and tools for employees and weighed in on what they’ve seen as most helpful. One reader warned of thinking about how long retirement will be and what inflation will do before getting a false sense of financial wellness. Editor’s Choice goes to the reader who said, “I really wish more people would tackle their finances head on. If they only knew how beneficial it would be to make sacrifices and wise decisions now! Get rid of that debt and save, save, save!” A big thank you to all who participated in our survey!Read more >
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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