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The BenefitsLink Newsletter -
Retirement Plans Edition

October 30, 2000

Today's sponsor is Super401(k) (click on banner for more information)
(Would your company like to sponsor an issue?)

Plan Distributions Not Permitted Under Retirement/Rehire Scenario
Excerpt: "IRS Information Letter 20000245 ... addresses the situation of an employee whose former employer had told her that it could not rehire her as a part-time employee immediately after retirement if she took a distribution from the former employer's 401(k) plan. The employee wanted to know if the employer's position was supported by the law." (EBIA Weekly)

60 Minute 401(k)
Excerpt: "All you need is an hour to create a solid retirement strategy and pick the right funds from your employer's plan. Don't believe us? Read on. The clock is ticking." (Money)

It's Time to See if Your 401(k) Measures Up
Excerpt: "Because of the stakes involved, many companies have made changes to their plans in recent years in an attempt to keep workers happy and lure new ones. Among the major trends: more investment options, much quicker enrollment and vesting, online access and offers of independent investment advice and education." (Los Angeles Times)

Welcome to new BenefitsLink advertiser MEVOCO
Mevoco is a company that provides actuarial services to individuals and companies. The actuarial services consist of: pension entitlement, actuarial valuation of pensions, financial evaluation of life insurance policies and financial evaluation of loss due to personal injury, accidental death or illness. The principal, Gary Mevorah, ASA, EA has over 16 years experience as a pension actuary in the area of private and public pensions and executive retirement.

Taking the Subsidy Out of Early Retirement: Converting to Hybrid Pensions (PDF)
Working Paper, made temporarily available for downloading by the Pension Research Council. (Robert L. Clark of North Carolina State University, Sylvester J. Schieber of Watson Wyatt Worldwide)

IRS Announces New Distribution Codes for 2001 IRA Distributions Reported on Form 1099-R
(Internal Revenue Service)

Prop. 33 Offers California Lawmakers Pension
Excerpt: "The measure, which has garnered little publicity amid other, noisier ballot battles, would allow California's 120 state legislators to voluntarily participate in the state's retirement system. Placed on the ballot by the Legislature itself, the proposed constitutional amendment would require a legislator who wants to join the state Public Employees' Retirement System (CalPERS) to contribute about 5 percent of his or her own salary, with the state picking up the employer's share. (Sacramento Bee)

Senate Drags Feet on Pension Legislation
Excerpt: "Two new General Accounting Office reports that call for a clear government policy regarding the growing trend of pension plan conversions may go unheeded by Congress in its rush to adjourn for the year. The Senate has delayed action on a package of pension legislation passed by the House, reducing the chances for a lively debate over retirement security-- and the GAO findings-- in the closing days of the 106th Congress. (Cincinnati.com)

SEC Treats Enrollment of Employees in Employee Stock Purchase Plan as "Investment Decision"
Excerpt: "As a result of the SEC's published position, Cooley Godward's Compensation & Benefits Group recommends that companies that are completing an initial public offering wait to enroll any employees in an [employee stock purchase plan] until a Form S-8 registration statement has been filed with the SEC covering the shares of common stock reserved for issuance under the ESPP." (Cooley Godward LLP)

Survivor Bonds and Compulsory Annuitization: Helping Reduce the Costs of Pension Provision (PDF)
Working Paper, temporarily made available for downloading by the Pension Research Council. Excerpt: "We believe that only compulsory pension annuities from a mandatory funded pension system can help resolve the problem of adverse selection.... [Further,] we propose that the government help current and future retirees by providing insurance against aggregate or cohort mortality risk. To do so, we show how a government can issue a new type of bond, a survivor (or indexed life) bond ..." (David Blake and J. Michael Orszag of the University of London, William Burrows of Prudential Annuities)

Retirement Planning and Asset/Salary Ratio (PDF)
Working Paper from Pension Research Council. Excerpt: "This chapter seeks to extend thinking about asset adequacy by constructing and testing a simple measure of retirement savings adequacy that is analogous to (but not identical to) the funding ratio concept used in defined benefit pension plans. Our hope is that this measure, which compares required assets-in-hand to salary, will provide retirement savers with a rough indication of where they stand on the path to adequate retirement income." (Martin L. Leibowitz, P. Brett Hammond, and Michael Heller of TIAA-CREF; J. Benson Durham of the University of Oxford)

Risk Management Through International Diversification: The Case of Latin American Pension Funds(PDF)
Working Paper, temporarily made available for downloading by the Pension Research Council. Excerpt: "Finance theory argues for international diversification of pension assets as a useful risk management tool ... Nevertheless, with the exception of Chile, few pension funds in Latin America invest in foreign assets. Our goal in this chapter is to offer empirical evidence of the potential for improvement in risk-adjusted returns for Latin American pension funds ..." (P.S. Srinivas of The World Bank, Juan Yermo of the OECD)

European Commission Proposes Directive On Occupational Pensions
Excerpt: "The European Commission issued a proposed directive on occupational pensions that, among other things, would establish European-wide standards for the management of pension assets. The proposal would establish prudential standards for pension funds while permitting funds sufficient flexibility to determine their own investment policies. The proposal also takes the first step in allowing pension plans to be managed on a cross-border basis." (Investment Company Institute)

A Look at Social Security Around the World
Excerpt: "Just about all developed countries have social security programs, but their structures vary widely. Here is a look at how some countries' programs are funded, what pension benefits they pay and what portion of the economy is devoted to them. (Washington Post)

Social Security: If It Ain't Broke . . .
Excerpt: "[P]rojections about the system's finances have improved so rapidly in recent years that some experts say there's no need to rush into changes that may or may not be needed. But that's a distinctly minority view." (Washington Post)

(Following also appears in Welfare Plans Edition)

Detailed Guidance on Electronic Filing of Form 5500 Made Available on DOL's EFAST Website
Excerpt: "On October 18, 2000, the DOL made available on its EFAST website three publications that contain detailed instructions for filing the Form 5500 electronically. A summary of each publication is set forth below." (EBIA Weekly)

Republicans, Democrats Argue Over Deadlocked Budget
Excerpt: "'We'll always listen to what the president has to say, but we have a bill that has already passed the House; the Senate is working on passing it. ... We have to move forward,' said House Majority Whip Rep. Tom DeLay, R-Texas." (CNN)

White House, Congress Budget Deal Falls Apart As Clinton Vows to Veto Bill
Excerpt: "A fragile budget compromise between President Clinton and Congress fell apart Thursday, diminishing hopes that Republicans and Democrats would find a way to deliver a $1 minimum wage increase and retirement tax breaks to millions of Americans." (Knight-Ridder / Tribune, via International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans)

Job Openings Newly Posted or Reposted on EmployeeBenefitsJobs.com

Implementation Project Managerfor Fidelity Investments
in MA
Client Managerfor Benefit Services Corporation, a subsidiary of METLIFE
in GA
Retirement Sales Consultantfor Invesmart
in CA, GA, IL, NY, TX
Employee Benefits - Legal Assistantfor Buck Consultants
in CO
Senior 401k Plan Specialistfor Citistreet - A State Street & Citigroup Company
in MA
Retirement Plan Sales Representative - Houston & Dallasfor Invesmart
in TX
Pension Actuaryfor EPACO, a Chicago based employee benefits consulting firm
in IL
401(k) Plan Administratorfor RSM McGladrey, Inc.
in IL

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