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December 18, 2012          Get Health & Welfare News  |  Advertise  |  Unsubscribe
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Employee Benefits Jobs

401k Administrator
for Advanced Pension Solutions, Inc. in OH

Assistant Pension Administrator
for Farmer & Betts in WA

Relationship Manager
for DailyAccess Corporation in KS

Divisional Manager of Operations
for Prudential in NJ

Plan Administrator
for Atlantic Pension Services, Inc. in PA

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Webcasts and Conferences

"Plan Corrections: When Good Plans Go Bad" - Bloomington
in Illinois on January 16, 2013 presented by SunGard Relius

"Plan Corrections: When Good Plans Go Bad" - Dallas
in Texas on January 16, 2013 presented by SunGard Relius

"Plan Corrections: When Good Plans Go Bad" - Charlotte
in North Carolina on January 17, 2013 presented by SunGard Relius

"Plan Corrections: When Good Plans Go Bad" - Chicago
in Illinois on January 17, 2013 presented by SunGard Relius

"Plan Corrections: When Good Plans Go Bad" - Houston
in Texas on January 17, 2013 presented by SunGard Relius

"Plan Corrections: When Good Plans Go Bad" - Appleton
in Wisconsin on January 18, 2013 presented by SunGard Relius

"Plan Corrections: When Good Plans Go Bad" - Atlanta
in Georgia on January 18, 2013 presented by SunGard Relius

"Plan Corrections: When Good Plans Go Bad" - Kansas City
in Kansas on January 18, 2013 presented by SunGard Relius

View All Webcasts and Conferences

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[Guidance Overview]

Legal Considerations in the Use of Alternative Investments by Retirement Plans
"In the current investment climate involving historically low interest rates and an uncertain stock market, [the law firm writing the linked article] been approached by clients, consultants and third party administrators with the same request: 'Can a plan invest in non-traditional investments, such as real estate?' The short answer is yes, as long as one follows the rules. Needless to say, there are numerous rules that must be followed. This article presents an overview of the pertinent considerations." (Fox Rothschild LLP)


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[Guidance Overview]

Designing Qualifying Plans for Employees in Puerto Rico
"While the provisions in Puerto Rico's tax code relating to qualified plans are similar to those in the Internal Revenue Code, there are a number of important distinctions. Typically, if the sponsor of a retirement plan qualified in the United States wishes to have its plan qualified in Puerto Rico, an addendum to the plan needs to be prepared that outlines the different rules that will apply to Puerto Rican participants. An alternative approach to compliance is to have the plan sponsor adopt a separate plan covering its Puerto Rican employees." (Fox Rothschild LLP)

Advocates for Retirement Tax Benefits Gird for 2013 Battle
"[A]dvocates for retirement tax incentives aren't being lulled to sleep. In fact, they are stepping up their lobbying to protect tax deferrals for 401(k) plans and individual retirement accounts during comprehensive tax reform next year, when Republicans and Democrats are likely to turn to them to raise revenue for other tax code changes." (Investment News; free registration required)

Some Corporate Bond Downgrades May Cause DB Funded Status to Drop Sharply
"For the second time in nearly three years, defined benefit (DB) plan sponsors may be finding a precipitous drop in the funded status on their balance sheets because of a decline in interest rates.... This second decline, in 2012, centers on downgrades in certain corporate bond issues, whose higher yields had been used by some plan sponsors to set their discount rate for determining their plans' liabilities and funded status for accounting purposes. These downturns in funded status have direct implications on the sponsoring organizations' financial statements, such as 10-K forms." (The Vanguard Group, Inc.)

Fee Disclosure Regs Generate Optimism and Opportunity for Plan Sponsors (PDF)
"Substantially more plan sponsors believe that the benefits of fee disclosure already do or ultimately will outweigh the drawbacks (66%) compared with those who believe the drawbacks will outweigh the benefits (27%). More than one-third said that disclosure of fees is a positive change and nearly one-third said that the disclosures make their lives easier." (Oppenheimer Funds)


Thomson Reuters Survey -- You May Win a $50 Gift Card!

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Answering Questions on Advisor Conflicts of Interest and Risk Governance
"In the case of dually-registered advisors, is disclosure of conflicts of interest a fiduciary requirement? Or is it enough to simply switch between the 'two hats'? ... Do structured investment products always run the risk of conflicts of interest? ... How is the trading desk as a profit center reconciled with the fiduciary duty to manage cost on behalf of the client?" (fi360 Blog)

State of the Insured Retirement Industry: 2012 Recap and 2013 Outlook (PDF)
"Nearly three in four financial professionals had clients who requested to purchase an annuity over the past year. According to a survey of financial advisors, annuities are now the most unsolicited products requested by clients. Additionally, nearly 73 percent of annuity owners consider annuities to be a critical component of their retirement strategy. Annuity assets are expected to reach an all-time high in 2013." (Insured Retirement Institute)

A Guide to Analyzing Social Security Reform Proposals (PDF)
"It is important to keep in mind that addressing Social Security's long-term financial challenges may involve a combination of changes from some or all of the types of reform presented in this guide. When evaluating proposals, be sure to consider the effect of any proposed changes to the Social Security program with respect to the program's projected deficit, the trust fund income and outgo, and the program's overall financial solvency." (American Academy of Actuaries)

How to Postpone RMDs for Traditional IRAs Using Rollovers Into Qualified Plans
"While the regulations do allow participants to defer beginning RMDs past age 70-1/2 for qualified plan participants, the plan sponsor has the option of choosing whether to allow such deferral.... The option to defer taking your RMDs past age 70-1/2 until retirement does not apply to your Traditional IRAs. Therefore, if you prefer not to take RMDs until you retire, you can do so by rolling over the amount to an employer sponsored retirement plan that allows such a deferral." (Appleby Retirement Dictionary)

EU Urges Spain to Rein in Pension Costs to Protect Budget
"Public pension spending [in Spain] will exceed the European average until 2060, even after an overhaul approved by the previous government, the EU said ... in its fiscal sustainability report. Assuming no policy changes, Spain's debt burden would rise to 114 percent of gross domestic product in 2020 and 129 percent in 2030, from 97 percent in 2014 and 36 percent in 2007, it said." (Bloomberg BusinessWeek)


A Recap of 2012's News for Fiduciaries
"In many ways, we'll remember 2012 as 'The Year Without a Fiduciary.' It held so much promise, especially after a disappointing 2011. We finally had the DOL's Fee Disclosure Rule locked in, and we hoped it was only the beginning. It wasn't. It was the end. Nothing more from the DOL. Nothing more from the SEC. Well, we weren't really counting on anything from the SEC. On a positive note, a reinvigorated Phyllis Borzi promises us the DOL will be entering 2013 on the cusp of issuing the final rule of the new definition of fiduciary." (Fiduciary News)


Should Public Plans Pay for Performance?
"At the end of the day, public pension funds should pay for risk-adjusted performance and make sure that this performance is based on clear targets and there's no gaming of benchmarks. [Boards] of directors have a duty to make sure compensation is fair, clear, transparent and in the best interests of all stakeholders. They should also be aware of what is going on in the private sector and adjust compensation accordingly." (Pension Pulse)

Benefits in General; Executive Compensation

New Appointments and Leadership Announced for 2013 ERISA Advisory Council
Current members Karen Kay Barnes and Neal Schelberg will serve as the chair and vice chair, respectively, of the council. New members and the areas they represent are: Josh Cohen (Investment counseling); Christina R. Cutlip (Employers); Ronald Gebhardtsbauer (Actuarial consulting); Paul M. Secunda (General public); and James I. Singer (Employee organizations). (Employee Benefits Security Administration)

Reinhart Employee Benefits Update, December 2012 (PDF)
Articles include: Select Compliance Deadlines and Reminders; PBGC Announces Section 4062(e) Enforcement Pilot Programs; IRS Permits Governmental Plans to Elect Cycle E; IRS Issues Final Regulations Amending the Prohibited Payment Option Under Single-Employer Defined Benefit Plan of Plan Sponsor in Bankruptcy; New Guidance Released on Wellness Programs; Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Releases Health Insurance Market Reform Rules; and HHS Releases Proposed Rule Relating to Essential Health Benefits Actuarial Value and Accreditation Standards. (Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren s.c.)

Press Releases

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