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The BenefitsLink Newsletter -
Retirement Plans Edition
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January 9, 2002 - 12,782 subscribers
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Profit Sharing/401(k) Council Releases Results of 2001 Investment Advice Survey
Excerpt: "22.0% of respondent companies reported providing investment advice. Advice was most prevalent in companies with 1-49 employees and least prevalent in companies with 200-999 employees." (Profit Sharing/401(k) Council of America)

IOMA Identifies What Services Sponsors Prefer to Handle In-House
Excerpt: "Surprisingly, the great majority of 401(k) plan managers keep the selecting/hiring/firing of service providers closely within their purview. In fact, an overwhelming 89.5% of the 245 respondents to our own 2001 Controlling 401(k) Plan Costs and Salary Survey said they handle this themselves rather than outsourcing it (5.9%) or sharing the responsibility with an outside consultant (4.5%)." (IOMA's Report on Managing 401(k) Plans)

McDonald's Drops Automatic Enrollment-- Others to Follow?
(Scroll to bottom of target page to find temporary link to the article, published by IOMA.) (IOMA's DC Plan Investing)

Analysis: the Problem of State Tax Law Non-Conformity with EGTRRA (PDF)
Excerpt: "What impact might this have for California employers and employees? While the full implications are not yet totally clear, some potential results include ..." (Trucker Huss)

Should ESOPs Be Subject to Stricter Diversification Rules?
NCEO executive director Corey Rosen says changing the law to require ESOP diversification at age 35 with 5 years of service (instead of age 55 and 10 years), as the Boxer-Corzine bill would require, would actually be a great disservice to employees by discouraging companies from setting up ESOPs in the first place. (National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO))

IRS Publishes New Form SS-4, Application for Employer Identification Number (PDF)
Two-page PDF document. (Internal Revenue Service)

Survey: State Taxation of Social Security and Pensions in 2000
Excerpt: "For some older Americans, the taxation of retirement income by states can add a significant amount to their total tax burden. In this update of the similarly titled 1996 AARP Public Policy Institute issue brief, David Baer summarizes personal income tax treatment of Social Security benefits and pension income for tax year 2000 by the 41 states and the District of Columbia that have a broad-based income tax." (American Association of Retired Persons)

Diminished Expectations: Participants Expect Single-Digit Returns for Near Term
Excerpt: "A new national survey of U.S. defined contribution plan participants, released by The Vanguard Group, reports that participants expect a 6% annual return on stocks in the near term." (Vanguard Institutional Services)

Greening Your Pension Fund: Socially Responsible Investing in Canada
Excerpt: "[M]ost legislation does not directly address SRI. To date, there have been few relevant legal cases to guide plan sponsors. Frequently, the decision comes down to a judgment call as to whether the benefit of introducing SRI outweighs any liability." (Benefits Canada)

(Following items are in both editions of the BenefitsLink Newsletter)

Special Reporting Requirements Regarding Incentive Stock Options and Employee Stock Purchase Plans
Excerpt: "This Alert will serve as a reminder of certain year-end reporting requirements imposed with respect to incentive stock options and employee stock purchase plans. Under Section 6039(a) ... every corporation that in 2001 issued stock upon the exercise of an incentive stock option ... must furnish, on or before January 31, 2002, a written statement containing certain specified information to the employee exercising the option." (Cooley Godward LLP)

Overview: Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (PDF)
4-page report prepared by the Trucker Huss law firm. Excerpt: "This article addresses the provisions of USERRA that concern the obligations employers have with respect to employee benefits." (Trucker Huss)

U.S. CEOs' Largest Paper Profits and Losses on Stock Options Received During 2000
Excerpt: "The following table shows the 15 U.S. chief executives with the largest paper profits and paper losses last year on stock options they received in 2000...." (Graef Crystal, on Bloomberg.com)

Newly Posted or Renewed Job Openings - Post a Help Wanted Ad
401(k) Plan Administrator for Small Employee Benefits Consulting and Actuarial Firm in Blue Bell, PA
Senior DC Administrator - Fun and Challenging! for Louis Kravitz & Associates, Inc.
Compliance and Nondiscrimination Testing Specialist for PFPC
Plan Specialist for Retirement Management Services, LLC

Newly Posted Conferences (Post Yours!)
Managing Prescription Drug Benefits-Teleweb Seminarin on January 16, 2002
presented by International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans
Designing Plans after EGTRRAin FL on February 14, 2002
presented by ASPA Employee Benefits Council of Central Florida

Newly Posted Press Releases
CNA Trust Midwest Hires Lisa Jones as Director, Consulting and Compliance (CNA Trust)
Hembree Awarded Qualified Pension Administrator Designation (ASPA)

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Copyright 2001 BenefitsLink.com, Inc., but you may freely distribute this email newsletter in whole. This newsletter is edited by David Rhett Baker, J.D.