Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
January 14th, 2015
Benefits & Administration
Participants Want Lifetime Income Estimates
Retirement plan participants say they want their retirement benefit statements to include an estimate of lifetime income. A study finds nine out of 10 participants want to see the estimate, which helps workers understand how much lifetime income could be generated from their retirement plans. The study by the Insured Retirement Institute (IRI) also reveals more than 90% of consumers want their employers to provide online retirement income calculators.Read more >
Ask the Experts
“I understand that the new 2014 5500 form/instructions have been issued. Are there any changes that would apply to 403(b) plans?”Read more >
Products, Deals & People
Shane Hall Financial has partnered with PlanMember Securities Corporation as a PlanMember Financial Center. The affiliation expands retirement investment planning and financial education opportunities for educators and employees of nonprofits in the West Texas Region.Read more >
Conor Weir and Sophois Sokhom have joined Retirement Benefits Group (RBG) to provide retirement consulting services to clients in Long Beach, California. Weir will serve as a managing director and financial consultant. He is responsible for retirement plan design, participant advising, investment management, fiduciary risk management, business succession planning and planned giving.  Read more >
Buck Consultants at Xerox, which offers human resources (HR) solutions to organizations, has hired Michael Kirchner to serve as a principal and retirement consultant in the Cleveland office. He is a part of the wealth practice team, which provides consulting services and solutions to address clients’ retirement risk management and cost control. He is responsible for advising clients on economic measures, accounting and regulatory rules.Read more >
Is the UAW’s Demand for Return of Pensions a Realistic Ask?
Deals and People
Voya Keeps Building Government Markets Team With Rehire
Data and Research
Unplanned Financial Challenges Continue to Plague US Workers’ Retirement Savings
Market Mirror
Market Mirror

The Dow closed 27.16 points (0.15%) lower Tuesday at 17,613.68. The NASDAQ slipped 3.21 points (0.07%) to 4,661.50, and the S&P 500 shed 5.22 points (0.26%) to finish at 2,023.04. The Russell 2000 increased by 0.54 (0.05%) to 1,180.64, and the Wilshire 5000 lost 50.07 points (0.23%) to finish at 21,280.56.


On the NYSE, 3.2 billion shares traded, and on the NASDAQ, 2.8 billion shares changed hands, with a slight lead for declining issues on both exchanges.


The price of the 10-year Treasury note increased 3/32, bringing its yield down to 1.898%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond slipped 1/32, increasing its yield to 2.500%.

PBGC to Request Pension Risk Transfer Information
The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. (PBGC) says it is revising the 2015 premium filing procedures and instructions to require after-the-fact reporting of certain defined benefit (DB) plan risk transfers through lump-sum windows and annuity purchases. The agency explains that risk transfers can substantially reduce the premiums plans otherwise would pay to the PBGC, and because premiums and the investment income earned on them are a major source of income for the agency, information about risk transfers is critical to its ability to assess its future financial condition.Read more >
Chancery Judge Neil Harris of the 16th Judicial Chancery District in Mississippi granted another restraining order that prevents Singing River Health System’s Board of Trustees from terminating its defined benefit (DB) plan for employees. According to the Biloxi-Gulfport SunHerald, the request for a restraining order was the fifth one made by a health system retiree. Each time a retiree files for another restraining order, health system attorneys remove the case to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi, claiming federal rules govern the pension plan.Read more >
What New Legislation Means for Multiemployer Plans
Adoption of the Multiemployer Pension Reform Act of 2014 (MEPRA) as part of the federal government’s 2015 omnibus funding bill extended and expanded key provisions of the Pension Protection Act (PPA) related to multiemployer plan funding remediation and administration. Serena Simons, senior vice president and national retirement compliance practice leader for Segal Consulting, tells PLANSPONSOR that the passage of MEPRA will be looked at as a significant step towards building a solid future for multiemployer pension plans. “It’s an extensive and complicated piece of legislation, but the one piece of MEPRA receiving the most attention thus far is the provision that gives trustees of deeply troubled plans the ability to avoid insolvency by reducing some benefits, including benefits in pay status, subject to various safeguards and requirements,” Simons notes.Read more >
DOL Explains Drop in 2014 Collections Totals
The Department of Labor (DOL)’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) says a substantial year-over-year drop in the agency’s reported collection totals for 2014 is the result of a change in reporting technique. The agency says industry speculation that a major drop in the reported dollar value of civil and criminal collections made on behalf of employee benefit plans in 2014 is the result of weaker efficiency or a shift in auditing policy misses the mark.Read more >
From the Magazine
Helping Different Generations with Retirement Readiness
How late is too late? At some point, under-saving participants reach an age when starting to aim for retirement readiness—such as that 80% income replacement ratio—is just unrealistic. “There are some folks getting into their 60s who haven’t saved, and they truly don’t have a lot of choices,” says Barb Hogg, a Chicago-based senior retirement consultant at Aon Hewitt. “Plenty of Baby Boomers are on track, but many don’t have the savings to continue their lifestyle in retirement. For them to simply say, ‘I’m going to make the shortfall up’ is not true—they’re not going to make it up. You can’t go back in time.”Read more >
Special Request from the GAO
If you are a defined contribution (DC) plan fiduciary who has considered adopting or has adopted a qualified default investment alternative (QDIA) for your plan, please consider answering a short questionnaire sponsored by PLANSPONSOR and the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO). Please note: GAO is not auditing or analyzing the policies or practices of any individual plan sponsor. All responses provided in this questionnaire will remain confidential. GAO will not attribute any provided information to any individual or company. GAO will accept responses to this questionnaire through January 30.Read more >
Small Talk
Kessler International conducted a survey by polling upper and mid-level management at 40 professional services firms, and found that the respondents indicated by an 84% margin that their staff was inconsiderate and rude in the workplace. In addition, the same respondents cited by 65% that they felt a majority of their staff lacked a moral compass. It wasn’t just bad manners or ethics, but a lack of business sense was revealed in specific scenarios reported by survey respondents. One manager stated that his employee met him at a lawyer’s office from whom they were trying to solicit business, wearing jeans and sandals with no socks on.Read more >
ON THIS DATE: In 1639, in Hartford, Connecticut, the first constitution in the American colonies, the “Fundamental Orders,” was adopted by representatives of Wethersfield, Windsor, and Hartford. In 1784, the Continental Congress ratified the Second Treaty of Paris, ending the War for Independence. In 1952, NBC’s “Today” show premiered. In 1970, Diana Ross and the Supremes performed their final concert at the Frontier Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. In 1972, NBC-TV debuted “Sanford & Son.” In 1973, the Miami Dolphins defeated the Washington Redskins 14–7 at the Los Angeles Coliseum in Super Bowl VII, becoming the first team in National Football League (NFL) history to finish with an undefeated season.
WEDNESDAY WISDOM: “Recognizing the need is the primary condition for design.” —Charles Eames, American designer
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All rights reserved.  No reproduction without prior authorization.

Editorial: Alison Cooke Mintzer


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