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Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy Every Weekday
Is It Time to Reconsider Self-Funding Health Insurance?
Is It Time to Reconsider Self-Funding Health Insurance?
Self-funding can result in cost savings and access to more data to drive better plan designs, but plan sponsors need to weigh that against all they will need to manage.
ICYMI: New Financial Audit Rule Increases Requirements for Plan Sponsors
Plan sponsors will be required to provide much more data, as well as certifications about plan administration and governance, and limited-scope audits will no longer be so limited.
Most Read
Pilot Claims American Airlines Prioritized ‘Underperforming’ ESG Funds
Data and Research
Retirement Racial Wealth Gap Disproportionately Impacts Black, Hispanic Americans
Ask the Experts
When Does a New Plan Have to Meet SECURE 2.0 Mandates?
Economic Events
Interest on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.16% for the week ending March 17, up from last week when it averaged 3.85%, according to Freddie Mac. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.09%. Interest on a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.39%, an increase from last week when it averaged 3.09%. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 2.40%.

Privately‐owned housing starts in February were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,769,000, the Census Bureau announced. This is 6.8% above the revised January estimate of 1,657,000 and is 22.3% above the February 2021 rate of 1,447,000. Single‐family housing starts in February were at a rate of 1,215,000; this is 5.7% above the revised January figure of 1,150,000. The February rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 501,000.

In the week ending March 12, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims for unemployment insurance was 214,000, a decrease of 15,000 from the previous week’s revised of 229,000, the Labor Department reported. The four-week moving average was 223,000, a decrease of 8,750 from the previous week’s revised average of 231,750.
Market Mirror
Thursday, the Dow gained 417.66 points (1.23%) to finish at 34,480.76, the Nasdaq closed 178.23 points (1.33%) higher at 13,614.78, and the S&P 500 increased 53.81 points (1.23%) to 4,411.67. The Russell 2000 was up 34.30 points (1.69%) at 2,065.02, and the Wilshire 5000 climbed 621.82 points (1.42%) to 44,427.40.

The price of the 10-year Treasury note was up 2/32, decreasing its yield to 2.177%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond was down 2/32, increasing its yield to 2.471%.
Investment Product and Service Launches
New Nasdaq-100 index fund institutional share class launches, while Alerian S-Network expands its environmental, social and governance offering.
SEI Helps Institutional Investors Manage Investment Data
Ledger allows asset owners to view, update and reconcile data from multiple sources.
Small Talk
ON THIS DATE: In 1766, after four months of widespread protest in America, the British Parliament repealed the Stamp Act, a taxation measure enacted to raise revenues for a standing British army in America. In 1813, David Melville patented the gas streetlight. In 1818, Congress approved the first pensions for government service. In 1852, in New York City, Henry Wells and William G. Fargo joined with several other investors to launch their namesake business, today one of the world’s largest banks. In 1881, Barnum and Bailey’s Greatest Show on Earth opened in Madison Square Gardens. In 1899, Phoebe, a moon of the planet Saturn, was discovered. In 1911, Theodore Roosevelt opened the Roosevelt Dam in Arizona. It was the largest dam in the U.S. at the time. In 1925, the worst tornado in U.S. history passed through eastern Missouri, southern Illinois, and southern Indiana, killing 695 people, injuring some 13,000 people, and causing $17 million in property damage. In 1931, Schick Inc. displayed the first electric shaver. In 1949, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) was ratified. In 1959, President Eisenhower signed the Hawaii statehood bill. In 1970, the NFL selected Wilson to be the official football and scoreboard as official time. In 1989, a 4,400-year-old mummy was discovered at the Pyramid of Cheops in Egypt. In 1990, the first free elections took place in East Germany. In 1992, White South Africans voted for constitutional reforms that would give legal equality to Blacks.

And now it’s time for some FRIDAY FUN!
An alternative use for a baby’s play seat.

In Costa Rica, a boy had surprising company on a zipline.

When you picture a herd of Bison, you might think of them roaming the plains of the Midwest, but recently, a herd was rounded up in Maine. UPI reports that 11 bison escaped from a private farm in Fort Fairfield on Wednesday morning and the animals wandered more than a mile to Quoggy Jo Ski Center in Presque Isle. Police said the owner of the animals believes the bison’s escape might have been caused in part by another large animal damaging the farm’s fence; however, the investigation into the escape is ongoing.

In Glenview, Australia, a woman recently called police when she heard a glass break in her kitchen late at night. However, it was not a burglar—it was a Carpet python! Sunshine Coast Snake Catchers was able to capture the intruder, and it was later released.

In Miami, Florida, a man who traveled there to officiate a friend’s wedding checked into his Airbnb around 2 a.m. He said the home was unlocked, “the bed was made and ready to go, and there were two clean folded towels waiting for me,” according to UPI. But, later that morning, someone knocked at the door, and when the man answered it, another man looked at him and said, “Hey, can I help you? This is my house.” It turns out the Airbnb was the house next door.

Have a great weekend!
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