Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
May 25th, 2016
Webcast Event
The editors of PLANSPONSOR and PLANADVISER magazines invite you to join us and a panel of industry experts in a very special forum—free and exclusively for plan sponsors—to discuss trends in optimizing employee savings rates, evaluating target-date managers;, the legal and regulatory landscape, macro DC/DB/NQ plans, RFP and benchmarking, fee allocation, plan design and investment menus.Read more >
Benefits & Administration
Americans Increasingly Concerned About Outliving Savings
As life expectancies continue to climb, Americans are increasingly less confident that their savings will last through retirement. According to the latest findings from Northwestern Mutual’s 2016 Planning & Progress Study, two-thirds of Americans believe there is some chance that they will outlive their savings, with one in three (34%) saying the likelihood is 51% or better. Fourteen percent think that outliving their savings is a definite likelihood. However, the study found Americans are not proactively addressing the financial implications of living longer.Read more >
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: What do the M’s stand for in M&Ms?
2022 Recordkeeping Survey
Maximum Benefit and Contribution Limits Table 2023
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: How Many States Are in More Than One Time Zone?
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: Meaning and Origin of the Idiom “Watershed Moment?”
Nearly All States Miss Income Replacement Target
Nationally, the median income for those who are 65 and older is just 60% of the median income seen among 45- to 64-year-olds.Read more >
Parents Not Bumping Up Savings After Children Leave
One would think that when children leave the home, parents would put much more into saving for retirement, but a study has found this is not the case. A study by the Center for Retirement Research (CRR) at Boston College found households do increase their 401(k) saving when the children leave, but only by 0.3 to 0.7 percentage points, depending on the definition and dataset being considered.Read more >
Ask the Experts
“I recently read your Ask the Experts Column ‘Tips for Reviewing SPDs.’ I realize that the Q&A is referencing the review of retirement plan SPDs, but would these be the same tips you would give for reviewing an SPD for medical/dental/eye plan(s)?”Read more >
Economic Events
Sales of new single-family houses in April were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 619,000, according to estimates released jointly by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This is 16.6% above the revised March rate of 531,000 and is 23.8% above the April 2015 estimate of 500,000.
Market Mirror

The stock market had its biggest gain since March as technology and bank stocks rose sharply, the Associated Press reports. The Dow increased 213.12 points (1.22%) to 17,706.05, the NASDAQ gained 95.27 points (2.00%) to finish at 4,861.06, and the S&P 500 closed 28.73 points (1.40%) higher at 2,076.77. The Russell 2000 climbed 23.94 points (2.15%) to 1,135.30, and the Wilshire 5000 was up 235.36 points (1.11%) at 21,460.57.

On the NYSE, 3.1 billion shares changed hands, and on the NASDAQ, 2.7 billion shares traded, with advancing issues outnumbering declining issues more than 3 to1 on both exchanges.

The price of the 10-year Treasury note was down 8/32, increasing its yield to 1.863%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond decreased 14/32, bringing its yield up to 2.645%.
Groups Ask for More Guidance About QLACs
The American Benefits Council and seven other industry groups or providers have written a letter to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to recommend two items for inclusion in the 2016-2017 Priority Guidance Plan relating to qualifying longevity annuity contracts (QLACs). In particular, the groups say guidance is needed to clarify how the limitations on QLAC premiums apply when a participant in a qualified plan wants to purchase a QLAC via a direct rollover because the plan does not offer one, and clarify how the regulations apply following a divorce of the QLAC owner if the contract was originally purchased with spousal benefits.Read more >
Retirement Plan Excessive Fee Suits Move Down Market
In many of the retirement plan excessive fee suits involving large plans, it is argued that the size of the plans’ portfolios gives them real bargaining power to negotiate lower fees for investments and administration. A new lawsuit argues that a $9 million dollar plan also has the ability to negotiate for substantially lower fees than an individual would pay.Read more >
On average, U.S. investors “believe they will need to earn a real annual return of 8.5% above inflation to achieve their investment goals,” and 70% say it’s realistic that they can achieve the returns they need over the long term, according to findings from the 2016 Individual Investor Survey by Natixis Global Asset Management. This outlook stands in direct opposition to the opinion of many asset managers, who have argued that 7% or 8% annual return assumptions will not hold in coming years and decades, necessitating greater emphasis on saving over investing as the centerpiece of retirement prep.Read more >
Editor’s Note
Interested in writing about issues affecting employer-sponsored retirement plans, or know someone who is? We are looking to hire a staff editor who would work in either our New York City or Stamford, Connecticut office. If interested, please email Alison Cooke Mintzer at
Small Talk
Nearly seven in ten parents (68%) currently give their children an allowance, and the children are working for it, according to a survey by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants CPAs (AICPA). The survey finds children’s allowances have grown 16% since 2012. AICPA suggests parents can use allowances to prepare children for saving for retirement.Read more >

ON THIS DATE: In 1787, the Constitutional convention opened in Philadelphia with George Washington presiding. In 1925, John Scopes was indicted for teaching the Darwinian theory in school. In 1927, Ford Motor Company announced that the Model A would replace the Model T. In 1935, Babe Ruth hit his final homerun, his 714th, and set a record that would stand for 39 years. In 1935, Jesse Owens tied the world record for the 100-yard dash. He ran it in 9.4 seconds. In 1961, America was asked by U.S. President Kennedy to work toward putting a man on the moon before the end of the decade. In 1968, the Gateway Arch, part of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial in St. Louis, Missouri, was dedicated. In 1992, Jay Leno debuted as the new host of NBC’s “Tonight Show.” In 1997, U.S. Senator Strom Thurmond became the longest-serving senator in U.S. history (41 years and 10 months). In 2001, Erik Weihenmayer, 32, of Golder, Colorado, became the first blind climber to reach the summit of Mount Everest. In 2001, Sherman Bull, 64, of New Canaan, Connecticut, became the oldest climber to reach the summit of Mount Everest. In 2006, in Houston, former Enron Corp. chiefs Kenneth Lay and Jeffrey Skillinng were convicted of conspiracy and fraud for the downfall of Enron.


WEDNESDAY WISDOM: “The greatest weapon against stress is our ability to choose one thought over another.”—William James, American philosopher and psychologist
Share the good news with a friend! Pass the NewsDash along—and tell your friends/associates they can sign up for their own copy.Read more >

Editorial: Alison Cooke Mintzer


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