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week ending February 21st, 2020
Americans are drowning in debt. Studies have shown that debt and homeownership are top reasons retirement plan participants withdraw funds from their retirement accounts early. And a recent Hearts & Wallets survey found more consumers think employers should help pay off student loan debt (39%) than should help with retirement (25%). These findings signal a strong need for financial wellness programs that address debt management. In addition to solutions to address student loan as well as consumer debt, employers may want to consider emergency savings solutions to help employees avoid debt in the first place. This edition of PLANSPONSOR Weekend will give you food for thought about structuring your financial wellness program.
Editor's Choice
Participants
Debt, Homeownership Driving Participants to Withdraw Retirement Funds
Data about retirement plan participant loans and hardship withdrawals supports the need for better financial wellness programs, especially for Millennials and Gen Xers.
Administration
Employer Student Debt Help Not Reaching All Who Need It
A Fidelity analysis found Baby Boomers and Generation X have high student loan debt, but as it may be for their children’s education, many employer programs are not helping.
Data and Research
High Cost of Living, Debt Are Reasons Americans Don’t Save Enough
A survey found more Americans are prioritizing building an emergency savings fund over retirement savings.
Benefits
Automating Emergency Savings for Retirement Plan Participants
Aside from the benefit of having emergency savings, people acclimated to having retirement savings automated will likely stay with an automated process.
Administration
Mechanics of Implementing a Sidecar Savings Account
Keeping retirement plan contributions rolling in while also allowing employees to save for emergencies.
Popular Reads
Compliance
SECURE Act 2.0 Passed Unanimously by Ways and Means Committee
A rare unanimous affirmative voice vote by the Ways and Means Committee allows the SECURE Act 2.0 to be considered by the full House of Representatives.
2020 Recordkeeping Survey
Administration
Forces Come Together to Make PRTs More Attractive
Increased funded status for DB plans and rising interest rates make now a good time for plan sponsors to consider implementing pension risk transfer transactions.
Benefits
Building Inclusivity Into Employee Benefits
While it’s a crucial step, experts say promoting an inclusive workplace entails more than offering benefits to different employee demographics. 
Participants
DC Plan Participants Need More Than Jargon
The way people view and define retirement has undergone a significant philosophical change in recent years, creating a clear and present need to update the defined contribution plan lexicon.
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