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October 19, 2006
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ASPPA Fall 2006 Exams – Early Registration Ends September 30

ASPPA’s 2006 fall proctored examination window will be November 1 - December 15. Early registration ends September 30, and the final registration deadline is October 31.
Register online at http://www.asppa.org/education/ed_dc-db_reg.htm. To learn more about ASPPA exams, visit the Education and Examination Web page at http://www.asppa.org/education/ed_ed.htm. Complete your exams this year. Sign up today!

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

Plan Sponsors Expect New Pension Law to Spur Higher Contributions
Excerpt: "Most plan sponsors expect that the recently enacted Pension Protection Act (PPA) will lead them to increase contributions to their retirement plans, according to a new survey of large plan sponsors by Towers Perrin." (Towers Perrin)

Letter with Comments on Proposed Distribution Plan for Massachusetts Financial Services Company (PDF)
5 pages. Excerpt: "The Distribution Plan appears to provide significant flexibility in connection with the timing of distributions. However, it is not entirely clear how much time retirement plan service providers will have to make certain decisions and obtain plan sponsor instruction prior to receiving payments." (The SPARK Institute)

The Hidden Investment 'Escape Hatch' in Your 401(k)
Excerpt: "You may not have to wait until retirement to unlock the investment potential of those retirement plan assets. That's right. Your employer's retirement plan may contain a little-known provision that may allow you to roll over these assets into an IRA Rollover while you're still employed, and without incurring any immediate tax liability." (Hanover Mariner via townonline.com)

IRS Provides Updated Guidance on Staggered Remedial Amendment Periods
Excerpt: "The IRS Employee Plans group has made publicly available two recent Quality Assurance Bulletins (QABs) dealing with the staggered remedial amendment period system." (CCH Pension and Benefits)

Overview: DOL's Proposed Default Investment Regulations (PDF)
3 pages. Excerpt: "This relief will be available to fiduciaries of participant directed individual account plans (e.g., 401(k) plans), and will be of particular use to plans with automatic enrollment procedures." (Dechert LLP)

Target Retirement Funds -- Prefab vs. Home Brew and a Study of the Ford Motor Company 401(k) Plan
Excerpt: "While [the author doesn't] necessarily take exception to the notion that the pre-fab TRF's are designed to meet both their sponsors economic objectives as well as their clients investment goals, [the author suspects] there are probably not that many plans where the customized TRF solutions based on their existing fund lineup would both; have an inherent expected performance advantage and the 'expected' excess returns would out-weight the added expense and liability . . . ." (Prudence Mann via Fiduciary Advisor)

Statement on 'Best Practices for the Design of Defined Contribution Pension Plans' (PDF)
9 pages. Excerpt: "The FER recommends that new employees be automatically enrolled unless they take the initiative to opt-out. It takes no position on the level of the default contribution rate, although it noted that contribution rates are often too low to provide adequate retirement income, and consequently the FER was intrigued with the Save More Tomorrow Plan where employees commit to increase their contribution rates at a later date." (Financial Economists Roundtable)


Links to Items on Executive Comp, Benefits in General

Overview: FASB Statement No. 158, Accounting for Pension and Other Postretirement Benefit Plans
Excerpt: "The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) has issued a final standard for the first phase in what is a two-phase project, which FASB announced late last year, to revise accounting requirements for pension and other postretirement benefits under FASB Statements No. 87, 88, 106, and 132(R)." (The Segal Group, Inc.)

Public Company Accounting Oversight Board Issues Guide on Options
Excerpt: "The independent board that oversees the accounting industry has issued guidelines for auditing the value of stock options given to executives and employees, now that companies are required to count the options against profits." (The Washington Post; one-time registration required)

Backdated Stock Options: What Are They Really Worth?
Excerpt: "From an economic standpoint, backdated options are probably not worth as much as employees who receive them, or compensation committees, might think -- particularly given the fact that most stock options have restrictions on exercise until a vesting period has elapsed." (Towers Perrin)


Newly Posted Events
(Post Yours!)

FMLA Update (One Day Program) in Locations throughout the United States
Nationwide on October 24, 2006
presented by HRTrainingCenter.com

Health & Welfare Plan Record Retention and Document Disclosures—How to Avoid Penalties, Keep the Feds Happy, and Prevent Compliance Headaches- WEBCAST
Nationwide on November 9, 2006
presented by HRTrainingCenter.com

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Ohio on November 28, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Missouri on November 28, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Iowa on November 28, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Ohio on November 29, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Illinois on November 29, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Iowa on November 29, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Iowa on November 30, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Missouri on November 30, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Illinois on December 5, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Alabama on December 5, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Mississippi on December 5, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Tennessee on December 6, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Alabama on December 6, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Illinois on December 6, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Alabama on December 7, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Wisconsin on December 7, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Missouri on December 12, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Texas on December 12, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Texas on December 12, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Texas on December 13, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Missouri on December 13, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in New Mexico on December 13, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Arizona on December 14, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Missouri on December 14, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

Journey deep into the world of IRAs
in Texas on December 14, 2006
presented by Wolters Kluwer Financial Services


Newly Posted or Renewed Job Openings
Post a Help Wanted Ad

Manager, Data Consulting
for Fidelity Investments
in NC

Defined Contribution 401(k) Plan Administrator
for Pension & Financial Services, Inc.
in PA

Compliance Specialist
for Mid-size Retirement Plan Service Provider (TN)
in ANY STATE

Compliance Manager
for Mid-sized Retirement Plan Service Provider (TN)
in TN

Omni Plus Loan Consultant
for Group H, Inc.
in ANY STATE

Benefits Specialist
for CLARCOR, Inc.
in TN

Profit Sharing & Pension Administrator
for ERISA Pension Systems
in FL

401(k) Plan Administrator
for Tofias PC
in MA

Implementation Manager
for Continental Benefits Group, Inc.
in NJ

Sales Manager: California Teacher's Assc.
for Standard Insurance Company
in CA




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