Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
January 12th, 2017
Benefits & Administration
Small and mid-sized employers surveyed by the Pew Charitable Trusts most often cited expense, limited administrative resources, and lack of employee interest as main reasons for not offering retirement plans. When asked about individual retirement account (IRA) plans funded entirely by employees that use automatic enrollment and pre-determined deductions from their pay, employers without plans were either somewhat or strongly supportive of the concept. But auto-IRAs run by governments are not favored.Read more >
The estimated aggregate funding level of pension plans sponsored by S&P 1500 companies as of December 31, 2016, returned to the same level, 82%, as it was as of December 31, 2015, according to Mercer. Throughout most of 2016, rates and funded status remained lower than in 2015, but by the end of the year, funded status improved to the same level, Mercer notes. Several firms note that the year-end market rally helped reverse a downward trend for pension funding in 2016.Read more >
Defined Benefit Plans May Have New Life
Ask the Experts
Can an Alternate Payee Designate a Beneficiary?
Data and Research
Retirement Plan Provider Technology Investments Show Success
Plan Sponsors Must Judge Fees Independently
Advisers and providers will help defend against fees challenges, but it is important to point out that the providers’ obligation is actually to make disclosures, not warrant that compensation is reasonable.Read more >
403(b)s No Strangers to In-Plan Income Products
While 401(k) plan sponsors are hesitant about adding in-plan retirement income solutions, 403(b) plans have been using them all along. According to the 2016 PLANSPONSOR Defined Contribution (DC) survey, 27.2% of 403(b) plans offer in-plan income products that guarantee monthly income, compared to 7.3% of DC plans overall.Read more >
The Problem With Retirement Savings Models
Retirement savings models often simplify a defined contribution plan participant’s situation, and plan sponsors need to help participants understand that the picture is more complex.Read more >
Gen X Must Commit to Personal Savings to Secure Retirement
As the first wave of Generation X workers begin to catch a glimpse of retirement age, the demographic group continues to face struggles in financial planning.Read more >
Products, Deals and People
Ascensus, a retirement plan and college savings services provider, has announced a technological overhaul which will include a redesign of its retirement plan and participant websites expected to be unveiled at the end of the first quarter. The initiative will begin with the launch of a new more >
Market Mirror

Wednesday, the Dow climbed 98.75 points (0.50%) to 19,954.28, the NASDAQ closed 11.83 points (0.21%) higher at 5,563.65, and the S&P 500 increased 6.42 points (0.28%) to 2,275.32. The Russell 2000 was up 2.39 points (0.17%) at 1,373.29, and the Wilshire 5000 gained 64.78 points (0.27%) to finish at 23,808.28.

On the NYSE, 3.1 billion shares traded, with advancing issues outnumbering declining issues more than 2 to 1. On the NASDAQ, 2.9 billion shares changed hands, with a slight lead for advancers.

The price of the 10-year Treasury note was up 4/32, decreasing its yield to 2.363%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond increased 14/32, bringing its yield down to 2.946%.
From the Magazine
Working Together
The last 10 years have seen plan sponsors exercise greater control of their defined contribution (DC) plans, and one tactic growing in importance for a broad range of plans is the white label fund. White label funds combine various investment vehicles.Read more >
Small Talk

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ON THIS DATE: In 1773, the first public museum in America was established in Charleston, South Carolina. In 1915, the U.S. House of Representatives rejected a proposal to give women the right to vote. In 1915, the U.S. Congress established the Rocky Mountain National Park. In 1932, Hattie W. Caraway became the first woman elected to the U.S. Senate. In 1948, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that states could not discriminate against law-school applicants because of race. In 1966, U.S. President Lyndon Johnson said in his State of the Union address that the United States should stay in South Vietnam until Communist aggression there was ended. In 1966, “Batman” debuted on ABC-TV. In 1971, “All In the Family” debuted on CBS-TV. In 1991, the U.S. Congress passed a resolution authorizing President George H. W. Bush to use military power to force Iraq out of Kuwait. In 1998, 19 European nations agreed to prohibit human cloning. In 2000, the U.S. Supreme Court, in a 5-4 ruling, gave police broad authority to stop and question people who run at the sight of an officer. In 2006, the U.S. Mint began shipping new 5-cent coins to the 12 regional Federal Reserve Banks. The coin has an image of Thomas Jefferson taken from an 1800 Rembrandt Peale portrait in which the president is looking forward. Since 1909, when presidents were first depicted on circulating coins, all presidents had been shown in profile.
SURVEY SAYS: We at PLANSPONSOR strive to bring you news that is relevant, helpful, informative and thought-provoking. This week, we’d like to know, what coverage do you MOST like and what would you like to see more of? 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


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