Newsdash Insight on Plan Design & Investment Strategy from PLANSPONSOR
September 7th, 2018
2019 Awards Nominations
2019 Awards Nominations Are Open
The nomination process has begun for the 2019 Plan Sponsor of the Year and Retirement Plan Adviser of the Year Awards.Read more >
Industry Voices
Barry’s Pickings: Two Cheers for Open MEPs
Michael Barry, president of October Three (O3) Plan Advisory Services LLC, says open MEPs will work up to a point, but contends that they only deal with one of the obstacles preventing small employers from adopting retirement plans.Read more >
Whole Foods Again Defeats Stock Drop Litigation on Appeal
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has firmly sided with Whole Foods by rejecting a stock drop lawsuit filed by participants in the company’s defined contribution (DC) retirement plan. As in other recent stock drop litigation decisions, the plaintiff here ultimately failed to jump the high hurdle for standing set by Fifth-Third vs. Dudenhoeffer.Read more >
PBGC Makes Available 2018 Premium Filing Instructions
Included in changes to the 2018 instructions, the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) expanded the examples about how to determine premiums in a year when a plan is involved with a spinoff, merger or consolidation, and it expanded the section about short plan years to provide additional information for plans expecting to distribute assets during the 2018 plan year pursuant to a standard termination.Read more >
2022 Recordkeeping Survey
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: How Many States Are in More Than One Time Zone?
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: Meaning and Origin of the Idiom “Watershed Moment?”
TRIVIAL PURSUITS: Which are the most northern, southern, eastern and western U.S. States?
More TDF Underperformance Lawsuits Emerge Across US
Economic Events

New orders for manufactured durable goods in July decreased $4.3 billion or 1.7% to $246.9 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau announced. This decrease, down three of the last four months, followed a 0.7% June increase. Excluding transportation, new orders increased 0.2%. Excluding defense, new orders decreased 1.0%. Transportation equipment, also down three of the last four months, drove the decrease, declining $4.6 billion or 5.3% to $82.8 billion.

In the week ending September 1, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims for unemployment insurance was 203,000, a decrease of 10,000 from the previous week’s unrevised level of 213,000, the Labor Department reported. This is the lowest level for initial claims since December 6, 1969, when it was 202,000. The four-week moving average was 209,500, a decrease of 2,750 from the previous week’s unrevised average of 212,250. This is the lowest level for this average since December 6, 1969, when it was 204,500.

The average interest rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is 4.54%, up from 4.52% one week ago, according to Freddie Mac. The average interest rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage is 3.99%, up from 3.97%.

Sponsored message from PLANADVISER Editorial
The 2019 PLANADVISER Awards Nominations Are Now Open!

Click here to be eligible for the 2019 Top 100 Advisers Listings and give your opinion on the state of the current retirement plan industry. Read more >
Market Mirror

Thursday, the Dow was up 20.88 points (0.08%) at 25,995.87, the NASDAQ fell 72.45 points (0.91%) to 7,922.73, and the S&P 500 decreased 10.55 points (0.37%) to 2,878.05. The Russell 2000 lost 13.18 points (0.76%) to finish at 1,714.47, and the Wilshire 5000 closed 128.98 points (0.43%) lower at 29,990.09.

The price of the 10-year Treasury note was up 7/32, decreasing its yield to 2.877%. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond increased 14/32, bringing its yield down to 3.053%.

Benefits & Administration
Administering Retirement Plan Account Forfeitures
A review of when defined contribution (DC) plan account forfeitures can occur and how they may be used.Read more >
Products, Deals and People
Investment Product and Service Launches
T. Rowe Price closes Emerging Markets Stock Fund; Fidelity merges active and passive funds in new TDF suite; SSGA decreases ETF expense ratios; and more.Read more >
Small Talk

ON THIS DATE: In 1813, the nickname “Uncle Sam” was first used as a symbolic reference to the United States in an editorial in the New York’s Troy Post. In 1880, George Ligowsky was granted a patent for his device that threw clay pigeons for trapshooters. In 1915, Johnny Gruelle received a patent for his Raggedy Ann doll. In 1921, in Atlantic City, Margaret Gorman of Washington, D.C., was crowned the first Miss America. In 1930, the cartoon “Blondie” made its first appearance in the comic strips. In 1963, the National Professional Football Hall of Fame was dedicated in Canton, Ohio. In 1966, the final episode of the original “The Dick Van Dyke Show” was aired on CBS-TV. In 1971, “The Beverly Hillbillies” was seen for the final time on CBS-TV. In 1977, the Panama Canal treaties were signed by U.S. President Carter and General Omar Torrijos Herrera. The treaties called for the U.S. to turn over control of the canal’s waterway to Panama in the year 2000. In 1979, ESPN, the Entertainment and Sports Programming Network, made its debut on cable TV. In 1986, Dan Marino of the Miami Dolphins threw his 100th career touchdown pass, in only his 44th NFL game, which set a NFL record. In 1986, Desmond Tutu was the first black to be installed to lead the Anglican Church in southern Africa. In 1989, legislation was approved by the Senate that prohibited discrimination against the handicapped in employment, public accommodations, transportation and communications.


And now it’s time for FRIDAY FILES!

Is this a door or a beach? [pic]Read more >
In New York City, the smallest diamond thief was caught on camera.Read more >
In Kuwait, a store has reportedly been shut down for tampering with its products. It was sticking ‘googly eyes’ on fish to make them appear fresher. [pic]Read more >

Ruso, North Dakota, is the state’s smallest city and almost lost its incorporation. After the death of its long-time mayor, the population fizzled to only two residents. According to the North Dakota Century Code, it takes a minimum of three residents for a community to be incorporated, the Associated Press reports. The city discovered that a man qualifies as a resident because he has a Ruso mailbox and makes daily checks on his horses and chickens on land within city limits. He is expected to become the city’s next mayor. The man and his wife currently live in Velva but plan to move later this year to Ruso, where they have a residence under construction. And the town is saved!


In Roanoke, Virginia, the operator of Clean Soles, a two-year-old sneaker store, was raided by two people on July 20 and by one person in August 25. The Roanoke Times reports he lost shirts, hoodies, a jacket, one complete sneaker pair—and 13 right shoes. The store operator says he typically keeps right shoes on display, while their other halves rest behind the counter.


In Lincolnshire County, UK, a 78-year-old recently had a very, very bad day. First, he was cycling quickly to put in lottery numbers in time for a drawing when a motorist pulled in front of him, knocking him off his bike. He missed putting in his numbers by 15 minutes, and later found his numbers would have won him £10,000, The Sun reports. Deciding to drown his sorrows, the man went out for drinks. When he returned home, he started cooking some food on the stove, but feel asleep and woke up to the sound of the fire alarm. The kitchen blaze grew, stripping roof tiles and melting an extractor fan, before firefighters arrived and put it out.


What’s the most germ-filled spot in an airport? It’s not the bathroom. A new study from a team of experts from the UK’s University of Nottingham and the Finnish National Institute for Health and Welfare, published in the BMC Infectious Diseases journal, has revealed those airport security plastic bins are the biggest culprit for spreading germs in airports. So, a CNN news report recommends that the next time you’re dumping your phone, passport and laptop into the bin—have hand sanitizer handy. The team monitored germ levels on a variety of surfaces at Helsinki-Vantaa airport in Finland during the winter of 2016. They found evidence of viruses on 10% of all the surfaces they tested. Other germ hotspots were shop payment terminals, staircase rails, passport checking counters, children’s play areas and in the air. There was evidence of rhinovirus—the cause of the common cold—plus some signs of influenza. The CNN report noted that a 2015 study from Travelmath reported that the tray table was the most germ-filled item inside an airplane, with overhead air vents also among the most germ-filled surfaces.


Have a wonderful (and germ-free) weekend, everyone!
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Editorial: Alison Cooke Mintzer


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