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February 4, 2013          Get Health & Welfare News  |  Advertise  |  Unsubscribe
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Employee Benefits Jobs

Lead Benefits Consultant
for AT&T in TX

401(k) Consultant
for Creative Retirement Systems in OH

Retirement Plan Specialist
for Transamerica in IA, OH

Processing and Office Administration Manager
for TRA, Inc. in WI

Plan Document Auditor, 13-0241
for Lincoln Financial Group in ANY STATE, IL, IN

Data Conversion Specialist - Retirement Plan Services
for John Hancock Financial Services in MA

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Webcasts and Conferences

Preparing Benefits and HR Professionals for 2013 and Beyond
in Ohio on March 5, 2013 presented by Thompson Hine LLP

ESOP Accounting: Financial Reporting by ESOPs
Nationwide on February 26, 2013 presented by National Center for Employee Ownership

Equity Compensation Taxation for Private Companies
Nationwide on February 27, 2013 presented by National Center for Employee Ownership

Affordable Care Act: Action Plan Webinar
Nationwide on February 28, 2013 presented by Bass, Berry & Sims

ESOP Accounting - Financial Reporting by the Plan Sponsor
Nationwide on March 5, 2013 presented by National Center for Employee Ownership

View All Webcasts and Conferences


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[Guidance Overview]

The Delinquent Filer Voluntary Compliance Program: Now with EFAST2!
"The new DFVCP is fully integrated into the EFAST2 electronic filing system for filing Form 5500s, meaning that all forms must be submitted electronically. In general, delinquent filers must use the most current year forms and schedules available for filing in EFAST2. However, the new DFVCP provides specific rules concerning the attachment of schedules relating to the Form 5500. In certain circumstances, delinquent filers will need to attach PDF images of the Form 5500 schedules applicable to the particular plan year to which the delinquent filing relates." (McGuire Woods LLP)


[Advert.]

The NAPA/ ASPPA 401(k) SUMMIT is Bigger and Better in Las Vegas!

Sponsored by ASPPA

Join us in exciting Las Vegas at Caesar's Palace and get the latest government and regulatory updates that affect you and find out why 1,300+ retirement plan professionals return every year.


Debate Heats Up Over Public Pension Discount Rates
"How can two otherwise similar pension funds use such radically different assumptions? The $20 billion Indiana pension system and E261 billion ($348 billion) ABP, which oversees the retirement assets of Dutch public sector employees, both take in contributions, invest their portfolio and pay pensions to retirees. Yet when it comes to the all-important discount rate, the number used to calculate the present value of future pension payouts, the Indiana and Dutch pension systems part company." (Institutional Investor)

Limitations Period for ERISA Claims of Imprudent Plan Investments Commences with Initial Fund Selection and Does Not Continue with Ongoing Monitoring of Funds, Absent Material Change in Circumstances
"The 4th Circuit [reasoned] that a decision to continue certain investments, or even the bank's failure to act, cannot constitute a 'transaction' for ERISA purposes; therefore, the only transaction upon which the participants could assert a prohibited transaction claim was the bank's initial selection of the bank-affiliated mutual funds. Additionally, because the participants did not allege that the funds' performance or fees changed in any material way after their initial selection, the participants' breach of fiduciary duty claim was not actually based on the bank's failure to monitor the funds but rather on the bank's initial selection of them." [David v. Alphin, No. 11-2181 (4th Cir. Jan. 14, 2013)] (Haynes and Boone, LLP)

DOL Settlement Produces $5.2 Million for Retirement Plan Clients of ING
"The U.S. Department of Labor today announced a settlement agreement with ING Life Insurance and Annuity Co. that provides for a $5.2 million payment to certain retirement plan clients adversely affected by its undisclosed practice of keeping investment gains achieved when the company failed to process requested transactions in a timely manner. The department alleged that ILIAC's failure to disclose its policy on reconciling transaction processing errors to retirement plan clients was a violation of [ERISA]." (Employee Benefits Security Administration)

It Pays to Set the Menu: Mutual Fund Investment Options in 401(k) Plans
"This paper investigates whether mutual fund families acting as trustees of 401(k) plans display favoritism toward their own funds. Using a hand-collected dataset on retirement investment options, we show that poorly-performing funds are less likely to be removed from and more likely to be added to a 401(k) menu if they are affiliated with the plan trustee. We find no evidence that plan participants undo this affiliation bias through their investment choices. Finally, the subsequent performance of poorly-performing affiliated funds indicates that these trustee decisions are not information driven and are costly to retirement savers." (National Bureau of Economic Research)


[Advert.]

Registration Now in Progress: 2013 Employee Ownership Conference

Sponsored by National Center for Employee Ownership

This conference on ESOPs and equity compensation draws over 1,000 attendees from across the U.S. and includes 88 panels and many additional interactive sessions, keynote addresses and more.


CalSTRS Needs $4.5 Billion Rate Hike for Full Funding
"CalSTRS needs $4.5 billion more a year to fully fund pensions over the next three decades, a 75 percent increase in the $6 billion total annual payments now being made by teachers, school districts and the state.... An additional $3.6 billion a year would yield 80 percent funding, $2.9 billion would prevent the investment fund (roughly $160 billion now) from running out of money, and $1.5 billion would push back the estimated run-out date from 2047 to 2058." (CalPensions)

Puerto Rico Teeters on Fiscal Edge Over Pensions
"Some experts are calling for cutting benefits to help Puerto Rico confront what economists and financial analysts say is a ticking fiscal time bomb: A public pension system with a $37.3 billion unfunded liability that must be addressed soon, at a time when the U.S. island territory's government has little money to spare." (The New York Times; free registration required)

LIMRA Predicts Retirement Income Opportunity Reaches $22 Trillion by 2020
"In 2010, U.S. households age 55+ held $12 trillion ... Based on U.S. Census projections, the assets held by this cohort will grow to $22 trillion that they will directly invest in products for generating retirement income. The number of Americans who receive income from an employment-based pension plan is on decline, and there will be many more retirees who will have most of their retirement assets invested in retirement plans. The study estimates that almost two-thirds of these assets will be directed towards products that will generate income for them in retirement." (LIMRA)

More Public Employees in New York Are Striking It Rich with 6-Figure Pensions
"Since March 2010, the number of six-figure public employee retirees statewide has increased 58 percent, according to statistics maintained by the Empire Center, an Albany-based think tank. The new crop of blue-chip retirements come as municipalities struggle to keep up with rising pension costs, accountable in part to the 2008-09 stock market dive." (Newsday)

Hospitals Slower to Follow Retirement Plan Trends
"[T]here has been a trend in the industry to move away from [DB] plans to [DC] plans, but the [Towers Watson] 2012 Benefits Benchmarking Study of the U.S. Hospital Industry found 54% of hospitals still offer defined benefit plans to new employees, compared to only 37% of other industry employers. One of the most interesting findings of the study ... is that hospitals, more than other sectors, are embracing hybrid plans." (PLANSPONSOR.com)

Change in Average 401(k) Account Balances (by Age and Tenure), Updated as of January 31, 2013
Reports show change in average account balances (by age and tenure) from January 1, 2011 through February 1, 2013. (EBRI)

Fiduciary Duty Has Legs But Call for Adviser Self-Regulatory Organization Is Lame
"The Securities and Exchange Commission is expected to issue a concept release as early as this summer on how to establish a uniform fiduciary duty for brokers and financial advisers. But a congressional call to establish a self-regulatory organization for advisers appears to be on a fast track to nowhere." (Investment News; free registration required)

NCEO Employee Ownership Update for February 1, 2013
NCEO Executive Director Loren Rodgers discusses a study on employee ownership and unemployment, proposed New Jersey legislation, the Certified Equity Professional Institute symposium, and the UPenn ESOP company executive program. (National Center for Employee Ownership)

On Financing Retirement with an Aging Population
"Policy analysts increasingly advocate savings-for-retirement systems, but are concerned with insufficient savings opportunities with limited government debt. This concern is unwarranted. First, there is more productive capital than commonly assumed in macroeconomic modeling. Second, if the policy reform subsumes the elimination of capital income taxes, then the value of business equity increases relative to the capital stock. Phasing in a switch from the current U.S. system to a savings-for-retirement system without capital income taxes increases welfare of all current and future cohorts." (National Bureau of Economic Research; purchase required for full document)

[Opinion]

Past Time for Pension Reform in Florida
"As Florida continues to dig out of the worst economic period since the Depression, lawmakers have to look for any way they can to cut costs. And that includes pensions.... The Florida Retirement System covered about 623,000 people in 2012, but only about a quarter of them worked at state agencies or state-run universities or colleges. Almost half come from school districts, about 23 percent work for counties and the rest work for municipalities or special taxing districts." (Miami Herald)

[Opinion]

Global Pension Assets Hit All-Time High?
"[The author is] not surprised by the findings as the bull market in stocks continues to catch most investors off guard. What is surprising is that this wasn't mentioned as a factor in [another article which] stated the growth in global pension assets is attributed to hiring more qualified people to manage pensions, outsourcing portfolios and better investment choices (beta, not alpha, drives the growth in pension assets)." (Pension Pulse)

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