Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
March 13th, 2019

Get to Know Our Plan Sponsor of the Year Finalists

Profiles are now online for 2019 Plan Sponsor of the Year finalists in the Nonprofit DC <$250MM and Nonprofit DC >$250MM categories.Read more >
Intel Wants Supreme Court’s Take on ‘Actual Knowledge’ Under ERISA
A decision by the Supreme Court on the question of what establishes “actual knowledge” of an alleged breach of fiduciary duty could have a big influence on how judges apply limitations periods in Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) cases.Read more >
Judge Rules ERISA Equitable Remedy Cases Have No Right to Jury Trial
A federal judge made this decision in allowing Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s motion to strike plaintiffs’ demand for a jury trial in a suit alleging breach of fiduciary duties and prohibited transactions.Read more >
Ask the Experts
Participant Tax Implications of Taking a Hardship Withdrawal
“I am the director of benefits at a small 501(c)(3) organization that sponsors an Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) 403(b) plan. An employee who took a hardship distribution last year complained about a ‘massive’ (her words) tax bill when she filed her 2018 tax return recently. I was a bit surprised by the negative reaction, but do not have a lot of experience with hardship distributions, since we require that loans be exhausted first. I didn’t quite know what to say to her. Can hardship distributions indeed leave someone with a ‘massive’ tax bill?”Read more >
2021 DC Plan Benchmarking Survey
Data and Research
Working Past Age 65 May Seem Like a Great Idea …
Data and Research
2022 Retirement Industry Trends to Follow
Economic Events

In February, the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 0.2% on a seasonally adjusted (SA) basis; rising 1.5% over the year, not seasonally adjusted (NSA), according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.1% in February, SA; up 2.1% over the year, NSA.


Real average hourly earnings increased 0.3% over the month in February, SA. Average hourly earnings increased 0.4% and CPI-U increased 0.2%. Real average weekly earnings decreased 0.1% over the month.
Market Mirror

Tuesday, the Dow closed 96.22 points (0.38%) lower at 25,554.66, the NASDAQ increased 32.97 points (0.44%) to 7,591.03, and the S&P 500 was up 8.22 points (0.30%) at 2,791.52. The Russell 2000 was virtually unchanged at 1,549.83, and the Wilshire 5000 gained 76.42 points (0.27%) to finish at 28,905.15.


The price of the 10-year Treasury note increased 12/32, bringing its yield down to 2.600%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond climbed 27/32, decreasing its yield to 2.987%.
Industry Voices
Why Plan Sponsors Should Consider Adding an ‘In-Retirement’ Tier in 2019
Toni Brown, with Capital Group, discusses how retirement plan sponsors can help participants in retirement stay properly invested while decumulating their assets.Read more >
Fixed Income Funds Took in Majority of 401(k) Participant Transfers in February
February was a slow trading month for 401(k) investors, according to the Alight Solutions 401(k) Index. There were only three trading days of above-normal trading activity. When participants did make trades, they overwhelmingly favored fixed income over equities. On 89% of the trading days, or 17 days, investors moved the majority of their money into fixed income. Only 11% of the trading days or two days, favored equities.Read more >
Small Talk
Despite the fact that 70.1% of employees surveyed by Achievers, an employee engagement platform provider, do not consider themselves “very engaged,” only 34.7% plan to look for a new job in 2019, down from 74% in 2018. When asked the main reason they would change jobs, only 14% said they’d leave because “I’m not engaged,” meaning many employees are sticking around despite average to no engagement. Instead, the top motives for people leaving their job were financial in nature. Employees surveyed said employers could do more to improve the employee experience and to offer recognition for their work.Read more >

ON THIS DATE: In 1639, Harvard University was named for clergyman John Harvard. In 1777, Congress ordered its European envoys to appeal to high-ranking foreign officers to send troops to reinforce the American army. In 1781, Sir William Herschel discovered the planet Uranus. In 1852, the New York “Lantern” newspaper published the first “Uncle Sam” cartoon. It was drawn by Frank Henry Bellew. In 1868, the Senate began the impeachment trial of President Andrew Johnson. In 1877, Chester Greenwood patented the earmuff. In 1884, standard time was adopted throughout the U.S. In 1930, it was announced that the planet Pluto had been discovered by scientist Clyde Tombaugh at the Lowell Observatory. In 1942, Julia Flikke of the Nurse Corps became the first woman colonel in the U.S. Army. In 1943, Japanese forces ended their attack on the American troops on Hill 700 in Bougainville. In 1951, the comic strip “Dennis the Menace” appeared for the first time in newspapers across the country. In 1972, “The Merv Griffin Show” debuted in syndication for Metromedia Television. In 1988, the board of trustees of Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C., chose I. King Jordan to be its first deaf president. The college is a liberal arts college for the hearing-impaired. In 1997, Sister Nirmala was chosen by India’s Missionaries of Charity to succeed Mother Teresa as leader of the Catholic order. In 2003, a report in the journal “Nature” reported that scientists had found 350,000-year-old human footprints in Italy. The 56 prints were made by three early, upright-walking humans that were descending the side of a volcano. In 2006, in New York City, the official start of construction of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum began. In 2012, after 244 years of publication, Encyclopaedia Britannica announced it would discontinue its print edition.



WEDNESDAY WISDOM: “There’s a difference between a philosophy and a bumper sticker.”—Charles M. Schulz, Peanuts comic strip creator
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Editorial: Alison Cooke Mintzer


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