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Ret plans - design

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Small Business 401(k) Plan Design Study: What 3,975 401(k) Plans Are Doing
"[1] 69.23% of plans use a safe harbor 401(k) plan design to avoid annual ADP/ACP and top heavy testing. Up from 68% in 2016. [2] 9.53% of plans automatically enroll employees that fail to make an affirmative enrollment election. Up from 8.71% in 2016...[3] The two most popular service requirements were 1 year -- used by 50.34% -- and none at all -- used by 21.81%. Very similar to our 2016 finding. [4] A 1 year of service eligibility requirement is most commonly combined with semi-annual entry dates and the hours of service crediting method -- the most restrictive combination allowed by law." (Employee Fiduciary)
[Opinion] 2019 Legislative Proposals to Improve Retirement Security and Saving (PDF)
17 pages. "[The authors offer] a number of observations about policy issues raised by several key proposals that are, or recently have been, under consideration in Congress.... Most of the generally bipartisan retirement proposals evaluated here ... appear to stand a very good chance of enactment.... [In] the aggregate, they are likely to bring about a meaningful net improvement in the retirement landscape ... However, some of these approaches need to be modified and, importantly, should not be seen as a savior for the nation's ongoing retirement challenges." (Martin Neil Baily, Benjamin H. Harris, and J. Mark Iwry, for the Brookings Institution)
Payment of DB Plan Benefits After Normal Retirement Age: Optional Designs
"A defined benefit plan must generally increase a normal retirement benefit actuarially where payment begins after a participant's normal retirement age. The Internal Revenue Code and underlying regulations, however, allow a plan to pay instead the normal retirement benefit amount plus make-up payments in some instances. In light of the DOL's scrutiny in this area, it may be wise for plan sponsors to review pertinent plan provisions and operation to make sure they comply with applicable rules." (Morgan Lewis)
Multistate Private-Sector Retirement Pact Getting Some Serious Attention
"The basic idea is for interested states to be able to tap into programs already built rather than starting from scratch.... So far, seven states -- including some that have already passed secure choice legislation -- are considering legislative language allowing for such partnerships, and many other private-sector retirement bills being considered this year would allow treasurers or other officials to decide whether collaborating with another state program is the most feasible approach." (Pensions & Investments)
There Are No Guarantees If You Self-Insure Your Retirement, Part 2
"[T]he 4% Rule [and] IRS RMD approach (or any other Strategic Withdrawal Plan) don't work with [Qualified Longevity Annuity Contracts (QLACs)] ... to provide a reasonable spending budget, as these approaches don't coordinate spending with other sources of retirement income. And while Monte Carlo models ... may be able to incorporate non-linear payment streams and indicate how a QLAC may positively affect the probability of success of meeting a certain spending goal, they will generally not tell you how to adjust your spending budget each year to keep on track." (Ken Steiner, FSA Retired)
[Guidance Overview] IRS Notice on Lump-Sum Windows for Retirees Creates More De-Risking Opportunities
"Plan sponsors should carefully consider [1] the possibility of further guidance from the IRS on retiree lump-sum windows ... [2] numerous other administrative complexities such as QDROs, how retiree medical premiums are being paid, etc.... [3] the PBGC and [DOL] implications of adding a retiree lump-sum window.... [S]ponsors should ensure that all participant communications are as clear and comprehensive as possible[.]" (Groom Law Group)
[Guidance Overview] IRS Allows Retiree Cashouts Again -- Consider the Benefits and Risks
"Notwithstanding the IRS about-faces, If you read it carefully, Notice 2019-18 does not clearly state that cashing out retirees is permissible. It is possible that retirees who squander their payments could come back to sue sponsors, particularly if the communications they received were poor. Although retirees may not be likely to win such suits, defending ERISA litigation takes time and money. Plan sponsors who want to offer these cashouts should be aware of litigation risk." (Cohen & Buckmann, P.C.)
[Opinion] Treasury Lump Sum Notice Puts Retirees' Pensions at Risk
"You may be asking, what's so bad about offering lump sums? Well if you're a retiree already in pay status receiving a guaranteed pension that you can't outlive, then being offered a lump sum is a bit like Adam contemplating eating that apple in the Garden of Eden. You may be tempted by something that looks good -- but if you give in to temptation you may come to regret it." (Pension Rights Center)
[Opinion] How People Might Save for Retirement in the Future
"While not possible under current federal law, one could imagine a low-cost, portable, individual-based system, managed by a third party, that allows workers to automatically contribute to their own retirement account with each paycheck and give employers the option to add to those accounts through a matching contribution. No current initiative fully captures these ideas, but recent actions at the state and federal levels point to a system that could cover more people without relying solely on individual employers to sponsor their own retirement plan." (The Pew Charitable Trusts)
Distributions from DC Plans: How Are Recipients Handling Them?
20 pages. "Data from this report can help employers benchmark their plan's data and answer the following questions ... [1] What do people do with their balances when they terminate employment? [2] What percentage of eligible assets leaves the plan? [3] How do distribution decisions differ by demographics? [4] Where do rollovers go?" (Alight Solutions)
Bill Would Create Fiduciary Safe Harbor for Annuity Selection
"The Increasing Access to a Secure Retirement Act (H.R. 1439) would provide a fiduciary safe harbor to the selection of an annuity provider. To qualify for the safe harbor, the fiduciary would need to meet several obligations in the consideration and selection of a provider, including that the cost is reasonable and the insurer is financially capable of satisfying the contract's obligations." (Callan)
How to Manage Withdrawals When You Retire During a Bear Market
"[T]hree different strategies ... that can allow you to still retire when you want to without the market fluctuations (or downturn) affecting your plans or causing you to run out of money sooner than you originally projected ... [1] The bucket strategy ... [2] Essential vs. discretionary ... [3] Structured systematic withdrawals." (Financial Finesse)
Financial Wellness: The New Workplace Imperative
"Financial wellness starts not with a big investment or infrastructure but rather with education and tools ... But financial wellness is also about guidance and solutions ... The employee benefits marketplace is witnessing a financial wellness arms race with employers and their employees being the winners." (MassMutual)
Employers Providing More Investment Assistance to Employees
"[T]ools like managed accounts and target-date funds continue to gain ground, with more than a third of companies now offering investment advice to participants. Some of the ways that companies provide investment support to participants include offering managed accounts, target-date funds, automatic features/qualified default investment alternatives and personalized investment advice from professionals." (Pensions & Investments)
[Official Guidance] Text of IRS Rev. Rul. 2019-06: Covered Compensation Tables for 2019 (PDF)
"Section 1.401(l)-1(c)(7)(ii) provides that, for pur poses of determining the amount of an employee's covered compensation under Section 1.401(l)-1(c)(7)(i), a plan may use tables, provided by the Commissioner, that are developed by rounding the actual amounts of covered compensation for different years of birth. For purposes of determining covered compensation for the 2019 year, the taxable wage base is $132,900. The following tables provide covered compensation for 2019." (Internal Revenue Service [IRS])
Beyond the 4% Rule: How Much Can You Spend in Retirement?
"How do you determine your personalized spending rate? Start by asking yourself these questions: [1] How long do you want to plan for? ... [2] How will you invest your portfolio? ... [3] How confident do you want to be that your money will last? ... [4] Will you make changes if conditions change? ... [A table provides] an estimate of a sustainable initial spending rate.... Be sure to factor Social Security, a pension, annuity income, or other non-portfolio income, in determining your annual spending." (Charles Schwab)
[Guidance Overview] IRS Opens the Door for Cashing-Out Retirees in Pay Status (PDF)
"[S]ponsors of ongoing defined benefit pension plans may want to consult their actuaries as to whether retiree lump sum windows make sense for their plans. It may not be the best option; commercial annuity rates are rising, which could make an annuity purchase less expensive than paying lump sums. In addition, retiree lump sum windows can lead to adverse selection. Retirees in poor health are likely to choose lump sums while those in good health remain in the plan, increasing the cost of maintaining the plan or terminating it." (Korn Ferry)
2019 Guide to Retirement (PDF)
52 presentation slides cover topics and themes for retirement planning, including: [1] Older Americans in the workforce; [2] Managing expectations of ability to work; [3] Retirement savings checkpoints; [4] Income replacement needs in retirement; [5] The 4% rule -- projected outcomes vs. historical experience; [6] Effects of withdrawal rates and portfolio allocations; [7] Structuring a portfolio to match investor goals in retirement; [8] Structuring a portfolio in retirement -- the bucket strategy; [9] Tax implications for retirement savings by account type. (J.P. Morgan Asset Management)
California Supreme Court Rules No Vested Right to Airtime Purchases; Leaves California Rule Intact
"The Court initially concluded that the Contracts Clause generally does not prohibit the prospective reduction or elimination of statutory terms and conditions of public employment. The Court recognized only two exceptions: [1] when the statute or the circumstances of its enactment clearly evince legislative intent to create a contract right, and [2] when certain benefits of public employees, primarily pension benefits, are protected as an implied contract right." [Cal Fire Local 2881 v. CalPERS, No. S239958 (Cal. Mar. 4, 2019)] (Hanson Bridgett LLP)
No Plan? Big Problem When It Comes to a Successful Retirement
"40.6 percent of American households are not on track for a financially successful retirement. Many probably assume they will just work longer.... [W]hile the median worker believes he or she will retire at age 65, in reality, the median retiree left the work force at age 62. Further, while nearly a third of workers believe they will retire at 70 or older, only 7 percent of retirees actually did so." (EBRI [Employee Benefits Research Institute])
Workers Delaying Retirement Are Taxing Employers
"A majority of employers (83 percent) report having a significant number of employees nearing retirement, but only half (53 percent) know when they will retire ... 80 percent of employers view their older staff as crucial to their success. But without a firm grasp on when they will retire, employers are unable to anticipate when they should set out to hire new staff." (Voya)
[Guidance Overview] IRS Breathes New Life into Retiree Lump Sum Windows
"Notice 2019-18 represents a significant change to the de-risking landscape. Although a retiree lump sum window program may not be appropriate for all plans, it should again become part of the discussion for plan sponsors seeking additional opportunities to de-risk their pension plans." (Morgan Lewis)
Choosing Between a Roth IRA and a Traditional IRA Contribution
"[1] Make sure you received eligible compensation for 2018 ... [2] Check your age for traditional IRA contributions ... [3] Check your MAGI limit for eligibility for Roth IRA contributions ... [4] Check eligibility for deductibility of traditional IRA contribution ... [5] Check suitability." (Denise Appleby, via Forbes)
[Guidance Overview] IRS Announces Retiree Lump-Sum Windows Are Back on the Table
"Wednesday's announcement signals a complete 180 from the IRS and Treasury Department from its position nearly four years ago. Notice 2019-18 indicates that the Treasury Department and the IRS will keep a close eye on retiree lump-sum windows, and it hinted that further guidance may be issued sometime in the future. In the meantime, it appears that plan sponsors can again consider whether a retiree lump-sum window is an appropriate feature, without fear of retribution from the IRS-at least for the time being." (Poyner Spruill LLP)
IRS Announcement May Allow Lump Sum Window for Retirees
"Plan sponsors do not have to offer lump sums to their entire retiree population.... The retiree group can be carefully selected to maximize the results of the window." (Findley)
Departing Employees Who Stay in a Defined Contribution Plan for at Least a Year Are Not Likely to Leave
"The percentage of participants taking a distribution -- either a cashout or a rollover -- within the first year of leaving their employer ranged from 55% to 60%.... [F]or each year [from 2008 through 2016], the percentage of people taking a distribution from their plans between one year and two years after leaving employment ranged from 14% to 16%[.]" (Pensions & Investments)
[Guidance Overview] IRS Cracks Open the Window for Retiree Lump Sums
"[Notice 2019-18] provides that the IRS will no longer assert that a plan amendment providing for a retiree lump-sum window program causes the plan to violate the required minimum distribution rules. The Notice states that the IRS and Treasury Department will continue to consider the issue of retiree lump sums generally, will not issue private letter rulings on this topic while it remains under consideration, and will continue to evaluate whether plans offering these lump sums satisfy other tax qualification requirements." (Eversheds Sutherland)
A Look at Employee Tenure: The Career Job Fallacy and the Impact of Low Unemployment (PDF)
"Over the past 35 years, median tenure has stayed at approximately five years.... [W]hile fewer workers have 25 or more years of tenure now vs. decades ago, even in the early 1980s, 'career' employees were in the minority.... [T]he proportion of workers with shorter tenures has increased since 2010." (Employee Benefit Research Institute [EBRI])
Retirement Savings Shortfalls Improve
"For 2019, [EBRI's Retirement Security Projection Model (RSPM®)] finds that 40.6 percent of all U.S. households where the head of the household is between 35 and 64, inclusive, are projected to run short of money in retirement. That is down by 1.7 percentage points vs. 2014. The model finds that the aggregate retirement deficit American households in this age cohort face, taking into account current Social Security retirement benefits, is currently estimated to be $3.83 trillion. The similar figure (adjusted for inflation) from 2014 was $4.44 trillion." (Employee Benefit Research Institute [EBRI])
Sponsors See Lifetime Income Proposals as Low-Priority Item
"Year after year, most sponsors lament the lack of a federal legislative and/or regulatory safe harbor to protect them against fiduciary risk in offering in-plan solutions such as annuities. They fret that such in-plan retirement income products are too expensive, too complicated and too lacking in portability. And year after year, many sponsors say such in-plan solutions aren't a top priority and that participants aren't clamoring for them." (Pensions & Investments)
IRS Notice 2019-18 Allows for Lump Sum Risk Transferring Programs for Participants in Pay Status
"Notice 2019-18 includes a retraction of intent by the Treasury Department and the IRS regarding proposed regulations under Code Section 401(a)(9) that would have limited accelerated forms of distribution to participants in pay status but allowed them for participants who had not yet begun to receive their benefit payments. Under Notice 2019-18, these proposed regulations will not be issued, which means that lump-sum windows may still be available for defined benefit plan sponsors." (Thomson Reuters Practical Law)
[Guidance Overview] Retiree Cashout Windows Once Again Viable
"IRS has announced that it will not move forward with previously announced changes to the minimum distribution regulations that would have prohibited retiree lump-sum windows. Instead, it will continue to evaluate whether such windows satisfy other qualification requirements -- but will not issue PLRs on them. IRS will no longer caveat determination letters to limit the opinion about the windows." (Buck)
Americans in Physical Jobs Have High Retirement Hopes
"The high stated retirement confidence of physical workers reflects the fact that the sample is relatively young and majority male, according to Aegon researchers, who also say that employers with predominantly physical workers can do more to boost their true retirement readiness." (planadviser)
Americans Cite Healthcare Expenses as No. 1 Barrier to Early Retirement
"When asked to name barriers to financial independence and early retirement, Americans are less concerned about uncertain market conditions (37 percent) or inflation (35 percent), than they are about healthcare costs (57 percent)... An overwhelming majority of Americans (76 percent) point to Medicare as the best way to pay for healthcare in retirement. Yet more than half of pre-retirees (61 percent) are not confident that it will cover the bulk of their retirement medical expenses." (TD Ameritrade)
[Official Guidance] Text of IRS Notice 2019-18: Offering a Lump-Sum Payment Option to Retirees Currently Receiving Annuity Payments Under a Defined Benefit Plan (PDF)
"This notice is to inform taxpayers that the Department of the Treasury and the [IRS] no longer intend to amend the required minimum distribution regulations under Section 401(a)(9) of the Internal Revenue Code to address the practice of offering retirees and beneficiaries who are currently receiving annuity payments under a defined benefit plan a temporary option to elect a lump-sum payment in lieu of future annuity payments." (Internal Revenue Service [IRS])
Senate Tax Extenders Bill Has Disaster Provisions Impacting Retirement Plans
"The primary aim of the legislation is to extend a number of expired or expiring tax provisions ... This legislative vehicle is also being used to provide tax-related relief to victims of several 2018 natural disaster events. These include presidentially-declared disasters that occurred between January 1, 2018, and March 1, 2019 (this bill's relief does not include victims of California wildfires, for whom similar relief was provided by Public Law 115-123)." (Ascensus)
Health of Employee Benefit Programs Can Be Make-or-Break Issue for Impending Merger or Acquisition
"Companies typically like to delay due diligence of employee benefits to maintain the confidentiality of the impending deal and because employee benefits may be perceived as being less material to the decision about whether to proceed or not. Unfortunately, this level of discretion can be costly, as employee benefit programs can deeply affect a potential deal, sometimes to the surprise of the acquiring company." (Milliman)
Safe Harbor or Traditional 401(k) Plan? How to Decide
"[A] safe harbor 401(k) plan is not the best fit for every small business. They can cost more than a traditional 401(k) plan, but offer less plan design flexibility ... To make an informed decision, you need to know two things: [1] if your plan will fail ADP/ACP or top heavy tests and [2] if safe harbor status will compromise your ability to meet plan priorities effectively." (Employee Fiduciary)
2019 Federal Retirement Security Blueprint (PDF)
"IRI's 2019 Federal Retirement Security Blueprint includes common sense, bipartisan policies to help Americans achieve their retirement goals.... [1] Expand opportunities to save for retirement by enhancing access to, and features of, workplace retirement plans; [2] Extend greater access to lifetime income products in workplace retirement plans; [3] Preserve and improve access to professional financial guidance, education and information; [4] Increase protections to safeguard Americans from financial exploitation and fraud; and [5] Maintain and enhance the current tax treatment of retirement savings." (Insured Retirement Institute [IRI])
2019 State Retirement Security Blueprint (PDF)
"This blueprint describes a number of key steps the states can take to help all Americans achieve their retirement goals.... [1] Adopt a clear, consistent and workable best interest standard of conduct for financial professionals. [2] Maintain the robust private-sector marketplace for retirement savings solutions. [3] Protect seniors and other vulnerable segments of the population against financial fraud and exploitation. [4] Enhance safeguards to protect Americans' personal financial information. [5] Facilitate and encourage improvements to the consumer and advisor experience." (Insured Retirement Institute [IRI])
Fidelity Lawsuit Could Have Wider Effect on Plan Investment Options (PDF)
"Although Fidelity is called out specifically in this class action regarding its disclosure and potential conflicts pertaining to its practices involving the operation of its proprietary mutual fund platform ... the potential industry implication is wide and deep. Today, all recordkeepers and custodians are subject to the same growth and revenue pressures to maintain service competitiveness and survival; favorable court findings in support of the Plaintiffs could affect the 'open architecture' approach altogether." [Wong v. FMR LLC, No. 19-10335 (D. Mass. complaint filed Feb. 21, 2019)] (Chao & Company, Ltd.)
Railroad Retirement Board: Retirement, Survivor, Disability, Unemployment, and Sickness Benefits
16 pages. "The Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) ... administers retirement, survivor, disability, unemployment, and sickness insurance for railroad workers and their families under the Railroad Retirement Act (RRA) and Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act (RUIA).... This report explains the programs under RRA and RUIA, including how each program is financed, the eligibility rules, and the types of benefits available to railroad workers and family members. It also discusses how railroad retirement relates to the Social Security system." [Report RS22350, March 1, 2019] (Congressional Research Service [CRS])
Stretching the Match: Unintended Effects on Plan Contributions (PDF)
12 pages. "When defined contribution plan sponsors stretch the match, they apply an existing dollar match to a higher contribution rate... [C]ontribution rates decline by 25% to 50% when the match is stretched.... Any incentive to obtain the full stretched match is more than offset by a reduction in plan participation rates." (Vanguard)
401(k) Safe Harbor Rules (PDF)
Detailed summary of safe harbor design and administration, presented in list and chart form. (Retirement Management Services, LLC)
[Opinion] The Phony Retirement Crisis
"Incomes will continue to rise, old-age poverty will fall, and the share of retirees unable to maintain their standard of living will be similar to today. The median retiree born during the Great Depression had an income equal to 109% of his average inflation-adjusted preretirement earnings. For Gen Xers born from 1966 to 1975, the Social Security Administration projects a median replacement rate of 110% of real average preretirement earnings." (The Wall Street Journal; subscription may be required)
Trends in Employee Tenure, 1983-2018
"[M]ost workers have changed jobs during their working careers, and all evidence suggests that they will continue to do so in the future. This ... has several important implications -- potentially reduced or no defined benefit plan payments due to vesting schedules, reduced defined contribution plan savings, lump-sum distributions that can occur at job change, and public policy issues both through lower retirement incomes of the elderly population and the loss of experienced, public-sector workers likely to be retiring soon." (Employee Benefit Research Institute [EBRI])
Nonstandard Work Arrangements and Older Americans, 2005-2017
"Among independent contractors, the share who were ages 55-64 increased from 18.8 percent to 22.9 percent; for those ages 65+, the share increased from 8.5 percent to 14.1 percent. In other words, 37 percent of independent contractors were older workers in 2017, up almost 10 percentage points since 2005." (Economic Policy Institute)
Why Borrowing from a Retirement Plan to Pay Off Debt Is a Bad Idea
"Borrowing more doesn't address the issue of how the debt was acquired in the first place.... Some retirement plans require immediate repayment of loans if you change jobs, or else the entire loan is offset against your retirement plan account balance.... [B]orrowing from a retirement plan will ultimately reduce your income in retirement. The earlier in your working career you borrow, the greater the impact; due to the time-value of money." (Cammack Retirement Group)
How Healthy Will Your DC Plan Be in 2019? (PDF)
10 pages. "Plan sponsors ... should conduct ongoing plan maintenance, which includes reevaluating the fund lineup, reviewing service providers, and documenting plan administrative decisions... [S]trong governance structures can address both investment and administrative duties and actions in a way that fosters prudent decision-making and effective management. Plan sponsors should also assess the plan design and the use of different features to help participants save adequately, invest efficiently, and ultimately spend down retirement assets." (Callan)
Lifetime Income: Current Policy Initiatives
"There remains widespread concern that sponsor fiduciaries may be held responsible, perhaps for decades, for the financial viability of any annuity carrier selected to offer an annuity under the plan.... Some participants may (often quite realistically) see themselves as likely 'losers' in the annuity tontine -- compromised health (for instance) may make them likely to die before their 'average life expectancy' date." (October Three Consulting)
Personal Experiences Managing the Life Portfolio Beyond Age 60
"[In] practice, the key to retirement well-being is to have a balanced 'life portfolio' where the retiree focuses on 4 key areas: [1] Health (and the activities to maintain and support health); [2] People (family, friends, community organizations, and the ability to create new contacts as needed); [3] Pursuits (work, volunteering, hobbies, community activities, caregiving, travel, etc.); and [4] Places (home and community).... [E]ven with retirement finances well intact, retirees who have a gap in one or more of these areas may still struggle with their personal retirement well-being." (Nerd's Eye View)
[Official Guidance] ERISA Advisory Council to Meet April 10
"[T]he 195th open meeting of the Advisory Council on Employee Welfare and Pension Benefit Plans (also known as the ERISA Advisory Council) will be held on April 10, 2019. The meeting will take place ... from 9:00 a .m. to noon and from 1:00 p.m. to approximately 3:30 p.m. The purpose of the open meeting is to set the topics to be addressed by the Council in 2019. Also, the Council members will receive an update from leadership of [EBSA]." (Employee Benefits Security Administration [EBSA], U.S. Department of Labor [DOL])
Open MEPs Will Be a Retirement Plan Market Disruptor
"[F]or employers, it will be a matter of how much control they will have and whether they can avoid some fiduciary duties. If a recordkeeper decides to sponsor an MEP, the businesses of [TPAs] and advisers may be impacted. Each employer may use its own adviser, but will the MEP offer one adviser? Likewise, will it use just one TPA or no TPA at all? If a broker/dealer or adviser decides to sponsor an MEP, who will it use for recordkeeping and TPA services or as an investment provider or adviser?" (The Retirement Advantage)
Has New Tax Law Twisted Business Owners' Best Interests When It Comes to Retirement Savings Plans?
"With the new law virtually eliminating personal deductions, retirement saving rises in standing.... While the concept of using retirement contributions to lower current tax liability remains the same, the actual implementation has changed. In some cases, the change may be quite dramatic.... [C]omplication comes in the income limits imposed by the new law." (Fiduciary News)
[Opinion] Jason Zweig's Proposal to Scrap 401(k)s
"Accumulating a nest egg is an essential first step, but there remains a second: how to convert the assets into income, with safety? One approach is to receive professional help, but for retirees who would prefer another path, today's 401(k)s are deficient. They offer few solutions save for the occasional calculator. They are of little help to investors who wish to make their own income decisions." (Morningstar Advisor)
Democrats and Republicans United in Concern About U.S. Retirement Crisis
"Americans see government playing an important role in helping workers prepare for retirement, but lawmakers in Washington aren't delivering results -- and the new tax law has not helped. Only 34 percent say the tax overhaul passed last year is helping on the retirement front, 84 percent say leaders in Washington have no idea how hard it is to prepare for retirement, and 80 percent say government should ease the way for employers to offer pensions." (National Institute on Retirement Security [NIRS])
New Jersey Moves Toward State-Sponsored Savings Program for Private-Sector Workers
"[E]mployers with 25 or more employees that have been in business at least two years and don't offer a retirement savings plan would be required to automatically enroll employees in an individual retirement account at 3% of pay.... The employees would be able to opt out or change their savings rate. Employers aren't allowed to contribute to the accounts and aren't considered fiduciaries[.]" (The Wall Street Journal; subscription may be required)
Using Financial Wellness to Attract and Retain Employees
"While there are many ways that healthcare institutions can try to appeal to potential new hires, one area in which they can differentiate themselves from their competitors is within their benefits package.... Traditionally, healthcare institutions have offered a retirement plan to help employees save and accumulate assets for their later years.... [O]rganizations may wish to consider enhancing [these] programs to encompass overall financial wellness." (Cammack Retirement Group)
Student Loans: Some Employers Help Workers Pay Them Down
"Such benefits are relatively new and unusual; only 4 percent of employers surveyed by the Society for Human Resource Management offer it. But its popularity is increasing, because it helps solve a growing concern for workers about their mounting debt. And it helps employers find and retain people when available workers are scarce." (National Public Radio [NPR])
Winning the Retirement Game: Be Flexible and Have a Plan
"Our inability to predict the future ... hasn't stopped individuals from coming up with approaches that they believe can 'safely' be used to spend down retirement savings which are significantly invested in risky assets. The 4% Rule is a classic example of such an approach.... [Dynamic approaches] require periodic (typically annual) 'actuarial valuations' to keep spending on track and consistent with a retiree's spending goals.... [R]eturns on risky assets will fluctuate from year to year and these fluctuations may increase or decrease how much we can afford to spend." (Ken Steiner, FSA Retired)
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