Retirement Plans Newsletter

November 11, 2016

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Duncan Financial Group
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General Motors
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Principal Financial Group
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Retirement Plan Administrators, LLC
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[Official Guidance]

Text of IRS Notice 2016-68: Update for Weighted Average Interest Rates, Yield Curves and Segment Rates, November 2016 (PDF)
"This notice provides guidance on the corporate bond monthly yield curve, the corresponding spot segment rates used under Section 417(e)(3), and the 24-month average segment rates under Section 430(h)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code. In addition, this notice provides guidance as to the interest rate on 30-year Treasury securities under Section 417(e)(3)(A)(ii)(II) as in effect for plan years beginning before 2008 and the 30-year Treasury weighted average rate under Section 431(c)(6)(E)(ii)(I)."
Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

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[Guidance Overview]

Updates to the Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System
"While Revenue Procedure 2016-51 is a useful update to EPCRS in light of the changes made over the past few years, it generally leaves the correction principles untouched. Given the curtailment of the IRS's determination letter program, we might see additional changes to EPCRS (e.g., expand the availability of self-correction under certain circumstances)."
Trucker Huss

Text of Treasury Department Denial of Application for Suspension of Benefits by Teamsters Local 469 Pension Fund (PDF)
"[A]fter reviewing the Application and consulting with PBGC and DOL, Treasury has determined that the suspensions described in the Application fail to satisfy the requirement set forth in Kline-Miller 'that the proposed benefit suspensions, in the aggregate, be reasonably estimated to achieve, but not materially exceed, the level that is necessary to avoid insolvency', because the zero-takeup assumption regarding spousal survivor benefits and the investment return assumption used for this purpose are not reasonable."
U.S. Department of the Treasury

Pension Plan Suffers Cybersecurity Attack, ERISA Advisory Council Offers Cybersecurity Recommendations to DOL
"[T]he UFCW Local 655 Food Employers Joint Pension Plan is notifying participants that it suffered a ransomware attack.... The data at risk in the UFCW Local 655 case included individuals' names, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, and bank account information. Every retirement plan, including pension and 401(k) plans, maintains this and other data about current and former participating employees, and their surviving spouses and designated beneficiaries, as applicable.... According to the [ERISA Advisory Council], there are four major areas for effective practices and policies: [1] Data management. [2] Technology management. [3] Service provider management. [4] People issues."
Jackson Lewis P.C.

Comparing IRAs: Trusteed and Traditional
"With a traditional IRA, beneficiaries can choose to name their own beneficiaries for those assets ... This gives traditional IRA beneficiaries more control over IRA assets passed on to them but it may not be in line with IRA owner's intentions or wishes. Likewise, traditional IRA beneficiaries can choose to withdraw any amount from the IRA and spend down the money quickly. With a Trusteed IRA, you can maintain control even after you've passed away, ensuring that your loved ones can receive regular distributions and also name how, when, and to whom you would like your IRA assets to be distributed."
Manning & Napier

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Insurance Industry Loses Challenge to DOL Fiduciary Rule
"The court took judicial notice of the fact that trillions of dollars of assets were estimated to be destined for investment in IRAs in the next five years without the traditional fiduciary/regulatory oversight that applied to pensions and 401(k) plans under ERISA. The court cited projections that individual investors could lose from 6% to 23% in avoidable investment costs, potentially in commissions, without standards similar to those applicable under Title I of ERISA." [Nat'l Assoc. for Fixed Annuities (NAFA) v. Perez, No. 16-1035 (D.D.C. Nov. 4, 2016)]
Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP

[Opinion]

Would Lifting the Taxable Earnings Cap Make Social Security Solvent? (PDF)
"What would happen if the taxable earnings cap were lifted entirely? The Social Security Trustees calculated different 'solvency provisions' and how they would affect the funding gap. Three are discussed [in this article]."
National Center for Policy Analysis [NCPA]

Benefits in General

Want to Engage Millennial Workers? Try Technology
"[B]enefits administration technology makes [deadlines] easier to meet by 'pinging' employees on key dates using email, text messaging and social media. Millennials tend to be less interested in face-to-face meetings at open-enrollment time. But ... they are receptive to webinars, on-demand video meetings and email communication.... Starting company-based groups and web pages is a great way to push HR, benefits and other corporate information[.]"
Corporate Synergies

Possible HR Implications of a President Trump and a Republican Congress (PDF)
"If the parts of the ACA that can be eliminated via budget reconciliation are in fact trashed, but the remaining parts of the ACA that would require legislation to pass both the House and Senate are not, there will be significant tax and spending distortions that could very significantly add to the federal budget and overall health care costs in this country.... It is nearly impossible that the DOL could pull the [fiduciary] regulation prior to April 10th nor could it subject it to changes, a comment and subsequent review period prior to that date. Compounding the difficulty for a new administration is that the enforcement of the rule as written lay not with the DOL but through private legal action."
Kushner & Company

Executive Compensation and Nonqualified Plans

ISS Announces Pay-For-Performance Methodology Updates for the 2017 Proxy Season
"The methodology changes, which will take effect February 1, 2017, respond to investor and issuer calls for ISS to use financial metrics in addition to total shareholder return (TSR) when assessing pay-for-performance alignment. The adjustments ISS will be making to its pay-for-performance analytics are summarized [in this article]."
Willis Towers Watson

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David Rhett Baker, J.D., Editor and Publisher  davebaker@benefitslink.com
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BenefitsLink Retirement Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9587. Copyright 2016 BenefitsLink.com, Inc. All materials contained in this newsletter are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of BenefitsLink.com, Inc., or in the case of third party materials, the owner of that content. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.

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