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Retirement Plans Newsletter

September 1, 2010

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[Guidance Overview]
Service Provider Fee Disclosure Regulations: Service Provider Categories
Excerpt: "The fiduciary/registered investment adviser category consists of three sub-groups: (1) plan fiduciaries; (2) fiduciaries to investment contracts, products, or entities that hold plan assets; and (3) registered investment advisers."
(SunGard Relius)

[Guidance Overview]
GASB Moving Towards Radical Overhaul of Public Pension Accounting (PDF)
12 pages. Excerpt: "'Preliminary Views' issued by GASB on pension accounting would, if adopted, represent a radical departure from past practice and bring governmental employers much closer to the FASB standards governing private employers. Public employers should anticipate that the accounting rules under consideration would have a significant impact on their balance sheet and income statements."

[Guidance Overview]
New Law Provides Funding Relief for Multiemployer Defined Benefit Plans (PDF)
3 pages.
(Prudential Retirement)

[Guidance Overview]
New Law Provides Funding Relief for Single-Employer Defined Benefit Plans (PDF)
5 pages.
(Prudential Retirement)

[Guidance Overview]
New SEC Rules Mandating Shareholder Access to Proxy Statements (PDF)
10 pages.
(Alston & Bird LLP)

'When I'm 64' -- How Aging U.S. Baby Boomers Have Begun to Carry That Weight
Excerpt: "The trend toward delayed retirement could also be good news for the cognitive capacities of aging baby boomers. Cross-national data from 13 developed countries have shown a correlation between delayed retirement and the delayed onset of cognitive declines, with both delays being more characteristic of older Americans than of older Europeans."

The Top Ten Major Misconceptions Plan Sponsors Have About Retirement Plans
2 pages. Excerpt: "[T]his list of major misconceptions about retirement plans is just a portion of the wrong advice that plan sponsors rely on, [but represents many misconceptions held by employers]."
(The Rosenbaum Law Firm P.C. via JD Supra, LLC)

Avoid the Added Cost of Top-Heavy Retirement Plans
Excerpt: "A plan that tests as top heavy on the last day of the 2010 plan year will be subject to the top-heavy rules for the 2011 plan year."
(KraftCPAs PLLC)

Trends in Workplace Retirement Education
Excerpt: "Plan sponsors want to make sure they are ahead of the curve with their retirement education programs rather than responding too late to major industry changes. To do so, they need to know the key trends in workplace retirement education and financial education."
(, LLC)

Pension Fund Investments Are Up, But Gaps Persist
Excerpt: "A review by Stateline of 20 public employee pension plans in 19 states shows preliminary returns ranging from 10.8 percent for the Nevada Public Employee Retirement System to 18.7 percent for the South Dakota Retirement System. Meanwhile, Wilshire Associates, a California-based investment adviser, reports a 13.09 percent median return among public plans with more than $1 billion in assets for fiscal 2010, compared to an 18.76 percent loss in fiscal 2009."
(The Pew Charitable Trusts)

Lawmakers' Letter Urges Keeping 408(b)(2) Disclosures Simple
Excerpt: " A letter to [EBSA] from five key lawmakers urges the agency to require service providers covered by proposed fee disclosure regulations to make their disclosure in a single, clear document."

Women Want Retirement Education Improvement, According to Survey
Excerpt: "According to the news release, 57% want more information and advice from their employer on how to reach their retirement goals, and 40% cited 'a good starting point that is easy to understand' as something that would motivate them to learn more about retirement savings."

NAIRPA Comments on Target Date Funds: Focused Disclosure Key for Investor Understanding
4 pages. Excerpt: "Essentially one size does not fit all when it comes to disclosure of the risk, volatility, age horizon, asset allocation or glide path of TDFs. Specifically this disclosure is relevant to three types of investors who constitute roughly two-thirds of the TDFs market -- (1) the plan sponsor or fiduciary, (2) the active participant, and (3) the default participant. Each of these investors has different concerns and needs . . . ."
(National Association of Independent Retirement Plan Advisors via American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries)

The ASPPA Annual Conference is attended by 1,600 of your colleagues, with more than 60 workshops and 80 vendor displays in the exhibit hall focusing on all areas of the retirement business. Attendees even get face time with representatives from every aspect of the retirement plan industry, including the IRS and DOL and Members of Congress and their staffs.
Sponsored by ASPPA

Benefits in General; Executive Compensation

Survey Finds Fewer Companies Continuing Benefits during Unpaid Non-FMLA Leaves
Excerpt: "According to the survey of Family Leave practices by BLR, 58% of responding companies allow benefits to continue, a significant decrease from the 73% of respondents who had such a policy in late 2007."

Employee Ownership Update for August 31, 2010
NCEO Executive Director Corey Rosen discusses the following: The report of the President's Economic Recovery Advisory Board mentions the possibility of eliminating ESOP 'special provisions.' The 2010 NASPP/Deloitte stock plan survey found some decline in broad-based plans, but they are still alive and well. A massive worldwide survey by Kelley Services found that most workers say profit sharing or ownership would motivate them to perform at a higher level.
(National Center for Employee Ownership)

Fall 2010 Likely to See the Most Significant Effort to Accelerate Income Since 1994
Excerpt: "[Why?] Big tax increases. Absent some quick and unexpected action by Congress, beginning January 1, 2011: the top individual ordinary income tax rate will increase to 39.6% from 35%, the top dividend tax rate will increase to 39.6% from 20%, and the long-term capital gain tax rate will increase to 20% from 15%."
(Michael Melbinger via Winston & Strawn LLP)

Plan Sponsors Not Focused on Same Issues As Advisers & Regulators
Interview with PlanSponsor's Nevin Adams. Excerpt: "Adams: Like their workers, I find most plan sponsors are more worried about the here-and-now aspects of health care reform than they are retirement plans, per se. People are people, after all, and there is a strong sense that we have more time to deal with retirement than with health care, and there is a great concern about what the new law will require, and how that will impact existing programs, and what that will mean."
(Fiduciary News)

Webcasts and Conferences

ASPPA 401(k) SUMMIT Advisor Webcast Series: Target Date Funds--Growth, Concerns and Changes
Nationwide on September 15, 2010
presented by ASPPA (American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries)

ASPPA EduCast: Advanced ESOP Design and Utilization and Solutions
Nationwide on September 28, 2010
presented by ASPPA (American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries)

ASPPA EduCast: What Does a DC Administrator Need to Know About a DB/DC Plan?
Nationwide on September 30, 2010
presented by ASPPA (American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries)

ASPPA Webcast: Are You Ready for October 15? EFAST2 and Form 5500 Update
Nationwide on September 14, 2010
presented by ASPPA (American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries)

Code Section 409A
Nationwide on September 9, 2010
presented by Lorman Education Services

Health Savings Accounts
Nationwide on September 16, 2010
presented by Lorman Education Services

Press Releases

PBGC Protects Worker Pensions at Fraser Papers
Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC)

NAIRPA Issues Comments to SEC on Target Date Funds
National Association of Independent Retirement Plan Advisors (NAIRPA)

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