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PLANSPONSOR NEWSDASH LOGO January 7th, 2022
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Deals and People
2022 Plan Sponsor of the Year Award Nominations Are Open
Award recipients across all categories will be honored at the PLANSPONSOR Awards for Excellence celebration at the PLANSPONSOR National Conference on June 8, 2022.
Most Read
1
2021 Recordkeeping Survey
2
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: Which are the most northern, southern, eastern and western U.S. States?
3
Employees Cite Several Reasons for Not Participating in Financial Wellness Programs
4
Plan Sponsors Might Mitigate ERISA Lawsuits With Defensive Provisions
5
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: Meaning and Origin of the Idiom “Watershed Moment?”
Economic Events
Interest on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 3.22% for the week ending January 6, up from last week when it averaged 3.11%, according to Freddie Mac. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 2.65%. Interest on a 15-year FRM averaged 2.43%, up from last week when it averaged 2.33%. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 2.16%.

New orders for manufactured durable goods in November increased $6.5 billion or 2.5% to $268.3 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau announced. This increase, up six of the last seven months, followed a 0.1% October increase. Excluding transportation, new orders increased 0.8%. Excluding defense, new orders increased 2.0%. Transportation equipment, up following two consecutive monthly decreases, led the increase, $5.0 billion or 6.5% to $82.1 billion.

In the week ending January 1, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims for unemployment insurance was 207,000, an increase of 7,000 from the previous week’s revised level of 200,000, the Labor Department reported. The four-week moving average was 204,500, an increase of 4,750 from the previous week’s revised average of 199,750.
Market Mirror
Thursday, the Dow lost 170.64 points (0.47%) to finish at 36,236.47, the Nasdaq closed 19.31 points (0.13%) lower at 15,080.87, and the S&P 500 decreased 4.53 points (0.10%) to 4,696.05. The Russell 2000 climbed 12.37 points (0.56%) to 2,206.37, and the Wilshire 5000 was up 8.19 points (0.02%) at 47,542.79.

The price of the 10-year Treasury note decreased 24/32, bringing its yield up to 1.729%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond increased 26/32, bringing its yield down to 2.086%.
Compliance
New Defendants Added in Refiled ERISA Complaint
The text includes an extensive number of related allegations against the plan’s adviser and sponsor, including allegations that suggest the plan sponsor and adviser made imprudent investment decisions that went uncorrected for an excessive amount of time.
DOL Recovers Money for ESOP Participants
The Department of Labor ordered the former trustee to restore $8.4 million and plan fiduciaries to restore nearly $1 million to the ESOP.
Products
Investment Product and Service Launches
Alger launches fund with ESG mandate; Security Benefit expands EliteDesigns variable annuity series; VERMEG adds new margin analytics capabilities with acquisition; and more.
Small Talk
ON THIS DATE: In 1610, Galileo Galilei sighted four of Jupiter’s moons. He named them Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto. In 1782, the Bank of North America opened in Philadelphia. It was the first commercial bank in the United States. In 1789, this was the deadline by which states were required to choose electors for the country’s first-ever presidential election. In 1894, W.K. Dickson received a patent for motion picture film. In 1896, the “Fannie Farmer Cookbook” was published. In 1927, Transatlantic telephone service began between New York and London. Thirty-one calls were made on this first day. In 1927, in Hinckley, Illinois, the Harlem Globetrotters played their first game. In 1950, “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” was the No. 1 song on the U.S. pop charts. In 1953, President Harry Truman announced the development of the hydrogen bomb. In 1954, the Duoscopic TV receiver was unveiled. The TV set allowed viewers to watch two different shows at the same time. In 1955, the curtain at the Metropolitan Opera in New York rose to reveal Marian Anderson, the first African American to perform with the Met. In 1975, OPEC agreed to raise crude oil prices by 10%, which began a time of world economic inflation. In 1980, President Jimmy Carter signed legislation that authorized $1.5 billion in loans for the bail out of Chrysler Corp. In 1990, the Leaning Tower of Pisa was closed to the public. The accelerated rate of “leaning” raised fears for the safety of its visitors. In 1999, President Bill Clinton went on trial before the Senate. It was only the second time in U.S. history that an impeached president had gone to trial.

And now it’s time for some FRIDAY FUN!
For those still in the Christmas mood.

A dog vs. cat optical illusion.

A vehicle modification for snow.

In Cambridge, Ohio, the owner of a hair salon, at the urging of his son, started “Hoss” the hairball from customers’ clippings. It grew big enough to be featured by Ripley’s Believe It or Not. Instead of taking it straight to a museum, Ripley’s took it to Comic Con in Orlando and asked attendees to donate their own hair clippings to help the hairball break the Guinness World Record. The hairball was certified at 225.13 pounds, breaking the record of 167 pounds set by Missouri barber Henry Coffer in 2014.

In Denver, Colorado, a family donated an old recliner to a local thrift store. Later that day, store employees had to call Denver Animal Protection. They discovered a cat hiding inside the recliner. The cat’s microchip was out of date, but the family had realized the cat was missing and went back to the thrift store to retrieve it. This is not the first time there has been a news report of a cat found in donated furniture. And long-time NewsDash readers might remember that this happened to me. A friend gave me a couch, and my son and I were surprised, and a little frightened, when the next day a cat slinked out from the inside.

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!
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