Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
January 23rd, 2019

Updating Loan Policies to Discourage Participants from Taking Plan Loans

Changes to maximum loan amounts and number of loans, as well as the imposition of fees and higher interest rates on loans can be written into loan policy statements in an effort to discourage this type of plan leakage. Read more >
Webcast Event
It’s no secret that employees need more help reaching their retirement goals. Even though investors may have access to more information than ever before, quality advice, especially around retirement, is still out of reach for many. In response, many employers have made online advice tools, such as managed accounts, increasingly available to employees in 401(k) plans. Managed accounts and other online advice tools can help guide employees on how much to save, how to invest their savings, and when to retire. But what impact, if any, do these programs have on saving and investing behavior? And what learnings can employers leverage to design a plan that helps employees meet their retirement goals? Read more >
Benefits & Administration
LIMRA Hopeful for Open MEP Progress in 2019
LIMRA has published a new white paper outlining its 2019 predictions for the investment markets, the economy and employer-sponsored retirement benefits. Legislative proposals could pave the way for increased access to workplace retirement savings plans in 2019, LIMRA says. Read more >
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EBRI Reassesses Whether DC or DB Plans Are Better for Participants
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Open MEPs Will Be a Retirement Plan Market Disruptor
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2019 Best in Class 401(k) Plans
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How and When to Encourage Use of Managed Accounts
Sponsored message from The State Universities Retirement System of Illinois
REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS
The State Universities Retirement System of Illinois (SURS) is seeking proposals from qualified firms interested in providing full service administration, recordkeeping, and investment related services for the existing Self-Managed 401(a) retirement plan, and a newly created 457(b) Supplemental Plan. Read more >
Economic Events

After two consecutive months of increases, existing-home sales declined in the month of December, according to the National Association of Realtors. None of the four major U.S. regions saw a gain in sales activity last month. Total existing-home sales, completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, decreased 6.4% from November to a seasonally adjusted rate of 4.99 million in December. Sales are now down 10.3% from a year ago (5.56 million in December 2017).

Market Mirror

Yesterday, the Dow lost 301.87 points (1.22%) to finish at 24,404.48, the NASDAQ closed 136.87 points (1.91%) lower at 7,020.36, and the S&P 500 decreased 37.81 points (1.42%) to 2,632.90. The Russell 2000 was down 25.05 points (1.69%) at 1,457.45, and the Wilshire 5000 fell 402.77 points (1.46%) to 27,214.51.

The price of the 10-year Treasury noted increased 13/32, bringing its yield down to 2.738%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond climbed 22/32, decreasing its yield to 3.064%.

Compliance
PBGC to Take on Sears/Kmart Pension Plans
The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) is taking steps to assume responsibility for Sears Holdings Corporation’s two defined benefit pension plans, which cover about 90,000 people. The national retail chain headquartered in Hoffman Estates, Illinois, operates through its subsidiaries, which include Sears, Roebuck and Co. and Kmart Corporation. PBGC has worked with Sears for several years to improve funding for the company’s plans. Read more >
Putnam Supreme Court Petition Asks About Comparisons to Index Funds
In addition to asking the high court to weigh in on whether the plaintiff or the defendant bears the burden of proof on loss causation under ERISA, Putnam asked the court to determine whether showing that particular investment options did not perform as well as a set of index funds selected by the plaintiffs with the benefit of hindsight, suffices as a matter of law to establish “losses to the plan.” Read more >
Bill Provides Retirement Plan Withdrawal Relief for Employees Affected by Government Shutdown
Federal employees and contractors would be able to take retirement account distributions without penalty and be able to repay the distributions to their accounts. Read more >
From the Magazine
Fee Transparency
A KSOP plan sponsor eliminates revenue sharing. Read more >
Investing
Study Suggests ‘Optimal’ Range of 401(k) Investment Categories
Based on the ERISApedia.com Market-Based Portfolio Model, the optimal number of investment categories is between 12 and 20. Read more >
Small Talk

ON THIS DATE: In 1789, Georgetown College was established as the first Catholic college in the U.S. In 1845, Congress decided all national elections would be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November. In 1849, English-born Elizabeth Blackwell became the first woman in America to receive a medical degree. It was from the Medical Institution of Geneva, New York. In 1907, Charles Curtis, of Kansas, began serving in the United States Senate. He was the first American Indian to become a U.S. Senator. In 1964, ratification of the 24th Amendment to the Constitution, which eliminated the poll tax in federal elections, was completed. In 1971, in Prospect Creek Camp, Alaska, the lowest temperature ever recorded in the U.S. was reported as minus 80 degrees. In 1973, President Richard Nixon announced that an accord had been reached to end the Vietnam War. In 1975, “Barney Miller” made his debut on ABC-TV. In 1983, “The A-Team” debuted on TV. In 1989, surrealist artist Salvador Dali died in Spain at age 84.

 

WEDNESDAY WISDOM: “The world is mud-luscious and puddle-wonderful.”—e. e. cummings, American poet

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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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