Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
March 24th, 2015
Benefits & Administration
Tangible Retirement Messaging Drives Better Outcomes
When it comes to workplace retirement planning and inspiring plan participants to improve their outlook, simpler messaging is often the most effective, says Stuart Robertson of ShareBuilder 401k. According to Robertson, just a $500 increase in annual savings can result in an extra $110,000 over a 40-year time horizon. Discussing the savings math with PLANSPONSOR, Robertson noted that a $500 increase matches the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) deferral limit increase scheduled for plan year 2015.Read more >
Empower Finds Four Drivers to Lifetime Income Success
Americans are on track to replace 58% of current income in retirement, and four factors can help increase that number dramatically, according to Empower’s 2015 Lifetime Income Score research. The 58% replacement rate (including Social Security), found in the fifth edition of this research, is a slight dip from last year’s reading of 61%. Although the research covering 4,000 Americans found that lifetime income scores—the trajectory to replace current income in retirement—are driven much more powerfully by savings behavior than by income level, Empower’s research found there were four factors that had the most influence on retirement preparedness.Read more >
CDHP Cost-Saving Not Just a One-Time Event
Health care cost growth among firms offering a consumer-directed health plan (CDHP) is significantly lower in each of the first three years after offer, according to a research paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research. Using data from 13 million individuals in 54 large U.S. firms, the research results suggest that—at least at large employers—the impact of CDHPs persists and is not just a one-time reduction in spending. However, researchers did find the decrease in spending may be smaller in year three compared to year one post-offer.Read more >
Multiemployer Plans Need Consistent Returns to Fully Rebound
Multiemployer plans have not fully rebounded from the 2008 financial crisis because returns have not kept pace with growth in liabilities, according to Milliman. The overall funding shortfall for all U.S. multiemployer plans increased by $5 billion for the year ending December 31, 2014, while the aggregate funded percentage decreased slightly, from 81% to 80%.Read more >
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Sponsored message from SEI
Read how leveraging an OCIO can help improve your DC plan lineup
An increasing number of organizations are seeing the benefits of this approach. This paper includes results from a recent survey of DC sponsors.Read more >
Products, Deals & People
Empower Launches Research Unit
Empower introduced the Empower Institute to provide research and discussion about a range of critical issues and challenges related to retirement savings, guaranteed income and investing. “The Empower Institute will explore many aspects of the retirement savings puzzle and work to blaze the trail on potential solutions to some of the most vexing challenges on this front facing the American worker today,” says Edmund F. Murphy III, president of Empower Retirement.Read more >
Economic Events
Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, rose 1.2% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.88 million in February from 4.82 million in January, according to the National Association of Realtors. Sales are 4.7% higher than a year ago and above year-over-year totals for the fifth consecutive month.
Market Mirror

Monday, the Dow was down 11.61 points (0.06%) at 18,116.04, the NASDAQ lost 15.44 points (0.31%) to finish at 5,010.97, and the S&P 500 closed 3.68 points (0.17%) lower at 2,104.42. The Russell 2000 decreased by 1.66 (0.13%) to 1,264.71, and the Wilshire 5000 slipped 37.87 points (0.17%) to 22,293.02.

On the NYSE, 3.2 billion shares traded, with 1.4 advancing issues for every declining issue. On the NASDAQ, 2.8 billion shares changed hands, with a slight lead for advancers.

The price of the 10-year Treasury note was up 6/32, decreasing its yield to 1.911%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond slipped 3/32, bringing its yield up to 2.512%.

Small Talk
ON THIS DATE: In 1868, Metropolitan Life Insurance Company was formed. In 1955, Tennessee Williams’ play “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” debuted on Broadway. In 1958, Elvis Presley was inducted into the U.S. Army. In 1989, the worst oil spill in U.S. territory began when the supertanker Exxon Valdez, owned and operated by the Exxon Corporation, ran aground on a reef in Prince William Sound in southern Alaska. In 2005, Sandra Bullock received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
TRIVIAL PURSUITS REWIND: In 1790, Congress passed a law allowing President George Washington to choose the permanent site for the nation’s capital. He selected a tract of undeveloped swampland on the Potomac River, between Maryland and Virginia. By what name did Washington refer to the place before the commissioners overseeing the development of the new city picked its permanent name?Read more >
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