Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
November 12th, 2018
Benefits & Administration
Crash Course on Social Security From AARP
AARP updated its recently launched Social Security Resource Center with an analysis of the 12 most common Social Security misconceptions held by workers and retirees in the U.S.; the publication also discusses solutions and strategies for improving the long-term strength of the system. According to David Certner, AARP’s legislative policy director, probably the first and most pervasive misunderstanding is that Social Security is at risk of “going bankrupt” in the near term. “At the moment, you could say the opposite; the Social Security trust funds are near an all-time high,” he says. “The program really is in good shape right now,” says David Certner. “But we know it has a long-term financial challenge.”Read more >
Pension Analytics Group Questions Efficacy of Multiemployer Pension Loans
Absent deep benefit cuts, many union-sponsored multiemployer pension plans are likely to become insolvent even if they have access to subsidized loans, according to a new white paper published by the Pension Analytics Group. The group conducted its latest analysis of government-backed bailout loans in response to recent proposals from lawmakers and retirement industry professionals suggesting a long-term, low-interest-rate loan program could save the most troubled multiemployer pension plans without imposing undue hardship on participants, contributing employers, the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC), the federal government, taxpayers or healthy plans.Read more >
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: Which are the most northern, southern, eastern and western U.S. States?
Participants Will Need Support to Understand Lifetime Income Projections
2021 Recordkeeping Survey
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: What do the M’s stand for in M&Ms?
Milliman Accused of Failing to Prune Bad Investments From 401(k)
Public-Sector Employees Want Customized Benefits
Employees in the public sector want customized benefits, according to a new report from MetLife. Their employers are also more likely than their peers to offer a full range of benefits. For example, 41% of public-sector employers offer a pension plan, compared with 16% of their private peers. Twenty-nine percent of public-sector employers offer financial planning workshops and/or financial wellness tools, versus 18% of their peers.Read more >
Products, Deals and People
Retirement Industry People Moves
VALIC Appoints New Business Development Vice President; JHRPS Promotes Executives as SVP Retires; Aon Adds Sales Director to Pennsylvania Office; and more.Read more >
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Economic Events

September sales of merchant wholesalers, except manufacturers’ sales branches and offices, after adjustment for seasonal variations and trading-day differences but not for price changes, were $511.2 billion, up 0.2% from the revised August level and up 7.8% from the September 2017 level, the Census Bureau reported. The July to August percent change was revised from the preliminary estimate of up 0.8% to up 0.7%.


The Producer Price Index for final demand rose 0.6% in October, as prices for final demand services advanced 0.7%, and the index for final demand goods moved up 0.6%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Prices for final demand increased 2.9% for the 12 months ended in October.


THE ECONOMIC WEEK AHEAD: Wednesday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics will reveal the consumer price index for October. Thursday, the Labor Department will release its initial claims report, and the Census Bureau will report about retail sales for October and business trade for September.
Market Mirror

Friday, the Dow was down 201.92 points (0.77%) at 25,989.30, the NASDAQ gave up 123.98 points (1.65%) to finish at 7,406.90, and the S&P 500 shed 25.82 points (0.92%) to end at 2,781.01. The Russell 2000 lost 28.72 points (1.82%) to close at 1,549.49, and the Wilshire 5000 was down 294.44 points (1.02%) at 28,668.12.


The price of the 10-year Treasury note was up by 15/32, decreasing its yield to 3.185%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond was up by 19/32, decreasing its yield to 3.386%.


WEEK’S WORTH: For the week ending November 9, the Dow climbed 2.84%, the NASDAQ increased 0.68%, and the S&P 500 gained 2.13%. The Russell 2000 was up 0.10%, and the Wilshire 5000 finished 1.74% higher.
From the Magazine
Another Way To Save
The IRS contribution limit for employees who participate in defined contribution (DC) plans—i.e., 401(k), 403(b) and most 457 plans—or the federal government’s Thrift Savings Plan increased this year to $18,500. For the majority of Americans, that seems like quite a bit to be able to save each year for retirement—especially along with, in some cases, the addition of employer matching funds, profit sharing contributions and the catch-up contributions that workers over age 50 can make. But, as noted by Jason Johnson, senior vice president for wealth management at UBS Financial Services in Orlando, Florida, “While it is surprising for some people to hear, it can be very challenging to have successful participant outcomes for highly compensated employees [HCEs]” in a standard defined contribution plan.Read more >
Small Talk
ON THIS DATE: In 1799, Andrew Ellicott Douglass witnessed the Leonids meteor shower from a ship off the Florida Keys. In 1859, the first flying trapeze act was performed by Jules Leotard at Cirque Napoleon in Paris, France. He was also the designer of the garment that is named after him. In 1892, William “Pudge” Heffelfinger became the first professional football player when he was paid a $500 bonus for helping the Allegheny Athletic Association beat the Pittsburgh Athletic Club. In 1915, Theodore W. Richards, of Harvard University, became the first American to be awarded the Nobel Prize in chemistry. In 1940, Walt Disney released “Fantasia.” In 1942, during World War II, naval battle of Guadalcanal began between Japanese and American forces. The Americans won a major victory. In 1946, the first drive-up banking facility opened at the Exchange National Bank in Chicago. In 1954, Ellis Island, the immigration station in New York Harbor, closed after processing more than 20 million immigrants since 1892. In 1964, Paula Murphy set the female land speed record 226.37 MPH. In 1972, Don Shula, coach of the Miami Dolphins, became the first NFL head coach to win 100 regular season games in 10 seasons. In 1975, U.S. Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas retired because of failing health, ending a record 36½-year term. In 1979, President Jimmy Carter ordered a halt to all oil imports from Iran in response to 63 Americans being taken hostage at the U.S. embassy in Tehran, Iran on November 4. In 1997, Ramzi Yousef was found guilty of masterminding the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center. In 2002, Stan Lee filed a lawsuit against Marvel Entertainment Inc. that claimed the company had cheated him out of millions of dollars in profits related to the movie “Spider-Man.” Lee is the creator of Spider-Man, the Incredible Hulk and Daredevil. In 2013, in New York, it was announced that the new World Trade Center was the tallest building in the United States. The height was measured at 1,776 feet. The building was also the fourth tallest building in the world at the time. In 2013, U.S. Airways and AMR reached an antitrust settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice which would allow a merger that would create the world’s largest airline.
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Editorial: Alison Cooke Mintzer


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