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Text of DOL Amicus Brief Asserting ERISA 404(c) Was Not Sufficient Defense in Suit Asserting Fiduciary Breach
Excerpt: "The district court erred in applying ERISA section 404(c) as a defense to the Plaintiffs' claims that the fiduciaries breached their ERISA duties in maintaining the Motorola Fund as an investment option in the Plan. The statute and its regulations make clear that ERISA section 404(c) provides a limited exception from liability for losses 'which result from' a participant's or beneficiary's exercise of control over his individual account in an individual account plan."
(U.S. Department of Labor)
Plan's Differential Treatment of Older Employees Was Based on Pension Status, Not Age
Excerpt: "A pension plan amendment that provided accelerated pension benefits to younger workers, but had no impact on the pension received by certain older workers, did not violate the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), the U.S. Court of Appeals in St. Louis (CA-8) has ruled in Schultz v. Windstream Communications, Inc.."
Senate Swaps Bill Threatens Retirement Plan Investments
Excerpt: "Legislation that would impose fiduciary duties on swap dealers who provide advice to retirement plans or offer to enter into swap transactions with plans is drawing fire from plan sponsor groups. The groups say the proposal -- potentially part of a developing Senate bill to overhaul regulation of financial services -- could prevent defined contribution plans from offering stable value funds and end pension plans' ability to use swaps to hedge investment risk."
Retirement Debate Focuses on Annuities
Excerpt: "The steady evaporation of pensions, the asset-sucking sting of the recession and the prospect of Americans living deeper into their retirement years is driving insurers and the government alike to ratchet up a push for annuity products."
Annuities Get a Behavioral Finance Makeover
Excerpt: "To explore the alternatives and implications[,] Allianz worked with Professor Shlomo Benartzi of UCLA to reach out to a number of academics in the field . . . . The findings, which Allianz said it submitted as its response to the February request for information by the Department of Labor and Treasury Department on retirement income products, was produced under the title 'Behavioral Finance and the Post-Retirement Crisis', broadly defined as being 'about outliving your assets.'"
$34 Billion Shortfall Estimate Sparks Renewed Talk of Taxpayer Help for PBGC
Excerpt: "However, not all agree on the need for a bailout, with some pension industry analysts saying concerns about the PBGC's health are way overblown -- at least in the short term. They say the PBGC, which had $68.7 billion in assets as of Sept. 30, 2009, has plenty of cash to pay off the pension benefit obligations of the plans it takes over for years."
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