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July 5, 2006
Today's sponsor: ASPPA • Working for America's Retirement™

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Banner ad for ASPPA • Working for America's Retirement™

Don't miss the 2006 Western Benefits Conference!

The famed Bellagio Hotel is the site of this year's WBC, held July 16-19. Sponsored by the Western Pension & Benefits Conference and ASPPA, there are more than 50 educational sessions on retirement, health, welfare, fiduciary issues and more plus networking activities such as an exhibit hall, golf outing, Sunday reception and entertainment on Monday evening.

(Please visit our sponsors. We try to make sure their products and services will be of interest to you. Thanks! --Editor)

Business Objects to FASB's Plan for Measuring Future Pension Costs
Excerpt: "Participants in a public roundtable held on Tuesday, June 27, at the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) headquarters in Norwalk, Connecticut, engaged in heated debate on FASB's plan to use a projected benefit obligation (PBO) metric for measuring pension liabilities that will appear on the balance sheet according to a revised standard, rather than the accumulated benefit obligation (ABO) that most companies prefer." (accountingWEB)

Pension Conferees Recess Without Reaching Agreement (PDF)
1 page. Excerpt: "Congressional pension conferees broke for the July 4th recess without reaching agreement on several provisions of the Senate and House versions of H.R. 2830." (Buck Consultants)

DOL's Top ERISA Enforcement Official Answers Compliance Questions
Excerpt: "Virginia Smith, EBSA's director of pension plan enforcement, recently answered questions about ERISA investigations at 'DOL Speaks: The 2006 Employee Benefits Conference,' in Washington, D.C., sponsored by the American Society of Pension Professionals and Actuaries." (Employee Benefit News)

America's Top Recordkeepers 2006: Listings for 83 Defined Contribution Recordkeepers
Excerpt: "As a complement to [PLANSPONSOR's] Defined Contribution Survey - which measures how satisfied DC clients are with their providers - the Recordkeeping Survey gives employers the chance to see exactly which products and services each provider offers, as well as listing information on total assets and overall client demographics. This survey, as opposed to the DC survey, is comprised of data collected from the providers themselves." (PLANSPONSOR.com; one-time registration required)

Wells Fargo Makes Retirement Fund Asset Inroads with Minority Outreach
Excerpt: "The company is garnering laurels and a reputation for tailoring its products, including retirement services, to the needs of all the minorities with which it does business." (Employee Benefit News)

Why an Equal Distribution of All the Retirement Asset Components Is Mandatory in a Lengthy Marriage
Excerpt: "Unless you practice in a State that requires that pension asset divisions only be made on a separate interest basis (the non-participant spouse is awarded the actuarial value of the participant spouse's accrued pension benefit on the marital property cut-off date), anytime you handle a lengthy marriage, this kind of distribution should be avoided at all cost if you represent the non-participant spouse." (Divorce, Pensions and Retirement Benefits Newsletter via www.divorcenet.com.)

Judge Won't Block New Public Employee Retirement System in Alaska
Excerpt: "A judge has ruled against an attempt by three labor unions to block a new retirement system for Alaska's public employees and teachers from taking effect. Juneau Superior Court Judge Larry Weeks ... said the unions that asked for the injunction did not meet the legal standard that would compel him to halt implementation of the retirement plan." (The Anchorage Daily News)

Employees Limit Their Exposure to Company Stock
Excerpt: "Even with the decrease, however, company stock continues to be the largest portfolio holding among employers that offer it as an option. Companies are taking steps to promote greater diversification." (Human Resource Executive Online; one-time registration required)

Many Are Ill-Informed and Unprepared for the Growing Burdens of Retirement, Studies Find
Excerpt: "Many Americans are stumbling toward retirement with big misconceptions about how to prepare financially for old age and, to make matters worse, with inadequate savings for a time of intensified economic pressures on the elderly. That assessment is found in a flurry of recent reports about preparations for life after work by older employees, including members of the baby boom generation." (Los Angeles Times: one-time registration required)

A Guide to Exchange-Traded Funds
Excerpt: "This brochure provides an introduction to ETF investing, explaining how ETFs work, their unique features and operations, and other characteristics." (Investment Company Institute)

Brazil's Senate Hikes Pension Pay, Risks Budget Hole
Excerpt: "Brazil's Senate approved a bill ... that would increase pension payments by much more than the government's proposal and risk blowing a hole in the budget. The bill increases payments for all pensioners of Brazil's social security institute INSS by 16.6 percent rather than the 5 percent proposed by the government." (Reuters)


Links to Items on Executive Comp, Benefits in General

Overview: Unfavorable Accounting Changes Expected for Post-Retirement Split-Dollar Plans (PDF)
1 page. Excerpt: "On June 15th, [the Emerging Issues Task Force (EITF) of the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB)] concluded that ... a split-dollar benefit that extends into post-retirement must be accrued and charged to earnings in accordance with APB 12 or FAS 106, similar to other post-retirement benefits." (Executive Benefit Solutions)

Overview: Court Opinion with Analysis of ERISA Preemption Principles
Excerpt: "Insurers and plans love ERISA for many reasons, but perhaps most because it precludes state law causes of action. Claimants who are denied benefits are unable to pursue remedies for breach of contract or bad faith, for example. They are left to recover their denied benefits, plus possibly attorney's fees and interest. No punitive or increased damages are permitted." (erisa on the web; posted by John Wood)

Deferred Compensation Programs: Section 409A -- Part II
Excerpt: "Excerpt: "[This article] addresses the impact of Section 409A on employment agreements, severance arrangements and equity compensation." (Employee Benefit News)

Milliman's Monthly Benefit News and Developments, July 2006 (PDF)
2 pages. The newsletter provides a summary of the previous month's legislative, regulatory, and judicial information on employee Benefits. (Milliman)

Canadian Law Ends Mandatory Retirement
Excerpt: "A law set to go into effect in Can.ada on December 12, 2006 will make it illegal for employers to mandate retirement for workers age 65 and older." (PLANSPONSOR.com; one-time registration required)

WorldatWork Releases New Stock Options Manual
Excerpt: "A national association for compensation and benefits professionals has released a new how-to book about stock options amid an ongoing probe into alleged backdating practices. A news release from WorldatWork said the new release is the second edition of the group's Stock Options and the New Rules of Corporate Accountability text." (PLANSPONSOR.com; one-time registration required)


Newly Posted Press Releases
(Post Yours!)

PBGC Protects Pensions at Victory Memorial Hospital (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
(Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC))

Hospital Plan's Participation Jumps 32 Percent After Switching to Single-Vendor Platform
(Charles W. Cammack Associates, Inc. (CWCA))


Newly Posted or Renewed Job Openings
Post a Help Wanted Ad

Defined Contribution Pension Plan Administrator
for Philadelphia Pension Consulting Firm
in PA

Advisor's Assistant
for BCG Securities
in NJ

Team Leader and Sr. Benefits Analyst
for Benefits Group WorldWide, Inc.
in CA




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