Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
March 3rd, 2017
Benefits & Administration
While it can be said that women have come a long way in the last few decades, they continue to face many social obstacles, not least of which is preparing adequately for retirement, according to the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies. Only one in 10 women are very confident that they will be able to retire comfortably, according to a new report from the Center, “Seventeen Facts About Women’s Retirement Outlook.” Read more >
More than 50 million American workers have no access to an employer-sponsored retirement plan, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, but a survey by the LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute found 61% of these employees are more likely to save for retirement if they had access to one. The survey indicates most workers prefer to save for retirement through their employers, and they value key features of defined contribution (DC) plans. Read more >
MOST READ ARTICLES
1
The Senate Math That Could Block SECURE Act
2
House Committee Advances Bill to Establish Union Pension Lifeline Program
3
Open MEPs Not for Every Plan Sponsor
4
Driving Financial Wellness at Work
5
Pension Participants Claim ERISA Breaches in Dow DuPont Pension Transfer
2017 PLANSPONSOR Service Stars
2017 PLANSPONSOR Service Stars
PLANSPONSOR is pleased to announce the 2017 winners of its Service Star award program, recognizing retirement plan account reps and relationship managers who have, based on descriptions provided by plan sponsor clients, demonstrated exemplary service over the past year. Read more >
Products, Deals and People
Investment Products and Services Launches
First Eagle launches mew mutual fund share classes; Natixis rolls out ESG TDFs; Vanguard reports third wave of expense ratio reductions; and more. Read more >
Economic Events

In the week ending February 25, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims for unemployment insurance was 223,000, a decrease of 19,000 from the previous week’s revised level of 242,000, the Labor Department reported. This is the lowest level for initial claims since March 31, 1973 when it was 222,000. The four-week moving average was 234,250, a decrease of 6,250 from the previous week’s revised average of 240,500. This is the lowest level for this average since April 14, 1973 when it was 232,750.

The average interest rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is 4.10%, down from 4.16% one week ago, according to Freddie Mac. The average interest rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage is 3.32%, down from 3.37%.

Market Mirror

Thursday, the Dow lost 112.58 points (0.53%) to finish at 21,002.97, the NASDAQ closed 42.81 points (0.73%) lower at 5,861.22, and the S&P 500 was down 14.04 points (0.59%) at 2,381.92. The Russell 2000 decreased 17.96 points (1.27%) to 1,395.67, and the Wilshire 5000 fell 170.65 points (0.68%) to 24,790.13.

On the NYSE, 3.1 billion shares changed hands, and on the NASDAQ, 2.9 billion shares traded, with declining issues outnumbering advancing issues more than 2 to 1 on both exchanges.

The price of the 10-year Treasury note was down 8/32, increasing its yield to 2.485%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond decreased 11/32, bringing its yield up to 3.078%.

Compliance
American Century Self-Dealing Complaint Advances
A district court judge in Missouri has denied American Century’s motion for dismissal of a lawsuit accusing the firm of self-dealing within its own 401(k). Read more >
Benefit Cuts Could Hit More Than One Million Multiemployer Plan Members
“Over a million people participate in multiemployer pension plans that are expected to run out of money over the next 20 years,” said Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) Director Tom Reeder, in an announcement that the agency has started providing financial assistance to the Road Carriers Local 707 Pension Fund, a newly insolvent multiemployer pension plan based in Hempstead, New York. Read more >
Investing
Institutions Want Assets To Work Harder
Data provided by Willis Towers Watson (WTW) about the firm’s broad base of institutional investor clients offers a telling look at the wider marketplace in which defined contribution (DC) and defined benefit (DB) plans operate. There is a new understanding that “what worked for investors in the past is unlikely to work in the future,” suggests Brad Morrow, head of manager research in North America with Willis Towers Watson. “So our clients are looking for new, innovative ways to achieve better risk-adjusted returns.” Read more >
Small Talk

ON THIS DATE: In 1791, the U.S. Congress passed a resolution that created the U.S. Mint. In 1845, Florida became the 27th U.S. state. In 1845, Congress passed legislation overriding a U.S. President’s veto. It was the first time the Congress had achieved this. In 1845, an Act of Congress established uniform postal rates throughout the nation. The act went into effect on July 1, 1845. In 1849, the U.S. Department of the Interior was established. In 1849, Congress created the territory of Minnesota. In 1863, free city delivery of mail was authorized by the U.S. Postal Service. In 1885, the American Telephone and Telegraph (AT&T) company was incorporated in New York as a subsidiary of the American Bell Telephone Company. In 1910, J.D. Rockefeller Jr. announced his withdrawal from business to administer his father’s fortune for an “uplift in humanity”. He also appealed to the U.S. Congress for the creation of the Rockefeller Foundation. In 1923, the first issue of Time magazine was published. In 1931, the “Star Spangled Banner,” written by Francis Scott Key, was adopted as the American national anthem. In 1969, Sirhan Sirhan testified in a Los Angeles court that he killed Robert Kennedy.

 

And now it’s time for FRIDAY FILES!

This dog knows what he wants and shops for himself. Read more >
In Zama City, Japan, a chef makes pancake portraits of animals. Read more >
In Santaquin, Utah, an ultrasound found a baby’s couple is ready to ‘rock on.’ [pic] Read more >

In Nijmegen-Zuid, Netherlands, a 99-year-old woman told her niece that getting jailed and booked was something she always wanted to do, but hadn’t. So, her niece called police and explained the situation. The police drove to the woman’s home, picked her up and drove her in a police car to the police station. Photos on Facebook showed the woman thrilled about her experience. “We don’t usually do this, but we made an exception for Annie,” a police spokesperson told BuzzFeed News. “It was just a couple of minutes in the cell. It was all about the experience. We don’t know why it was on her bucket list.”

In Seattle, Washington, a tanker truck carrying propane rolled over on an Interstate causing a major, hours-long traffic jam. But, stranded motorists were pleased to find that there was no worry of hunger, because a taco truck also stuck in the jam began handing out food to them, according to the Associated Press.

In Canada, researchers set out to find how much uri.ne is actually in swimming pools. They monitored two public pools for three weeks for acesulfame potassium (ACE). One pool contained 110,000 gallons of water, while the other held 220,000 gallons. The Huffington Post reports that based on the ACE measurements, researchers estimate that over the three-week period, swimmers released 7.92 gallons of uri.ne into the smaller pool, and nearly 20 gallons into the larger one. In addition, the team analyzed 250 samples from 31 other pools and hot tubs, and discovered ACE levels were up to 570 times greater than the amount of uri.ne found in tap water.

In Cleveland, Ohio, two teenagers tried to carjack a man, but when they got into the car, they didn’t know how to drive a stick shift. According to Reuters, they pulled a g.un on the victim and asked him for instructions, which he provided. But the two teenagers finally got frustrated and ran off with the victim’s cellphone, which was used to locate them.

Have a wonderful weekend!

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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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