Retirement Plans Newsletter

January 31, 2019

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Webcasts, Conferences

Tax Reform Basics for the Qualified Business Income Deduction (199A)
RECORDED
IRS [Internal Revenue Service]

Power of Diversity and Inclusion: Today's Competitive Edge in Employee Benefits
February 27, 2019 in MA
New England Employee Benefits Council

Understanding & Managing Retirement Plan Fees
March 6, 2019 in MA
New England Employee Benefits Council

IRA Required Minimum Distributions
March 14, 2019 WEBCAST
Ascensus

Essentials for the Benefits Practitioner: An Actuarial Update for ERISA Practitioners
March 21, 2019 WEBCAST
American Bar Association Joint Committee on Employee Benefits [JCEB]

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[Guidance Overview]

Compensation for MEP Sponsors, Part 1 (PDF)

"[T]here is a growing interest in the TPA and advisory communities about the sponsorship and administration of both open and 'Association' MEPs. However, there are complex issues about the payment of compensation and expenses for those services, including: [1] Can MEP sponsors make a profit, or would that be a prohibited transaction? [2] Can they be reimbursed for costs? [3] Can the compensation or reimbursements be paid from plan assets? "
Fred Reish, Bruce Ashton and Josh Waldbeser, via Plan Consultant

[Advert.]

Bring Employee Benefits Education to You

Sponsored by International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans [IFEBP]

With On-Site Education from the International Foundation, your staff can receive high-quality education in a customized, one-of-a-kind learning experience. Avoid the cost and inconvenience of travel, and let us bring the education to you! Learn More.


PBGC Finalizes and Expands Mediation Program

"In order to request to participate in the program, the sponsor of a terminated plan must submit within 120 days of the plan termination date certain information ... regarding the sponsor's and its controlled group's net worth, including, for example, audited financial statements, information regarding sales or sales offers, and appraisals."
Groom Law Group

2019 Key Administrative Dates and Deadlines for Calendar-Year Defined Contribution Plans (PDF)

This four-page chart includes a descriptive list of the 'key' administrative dates and deadlines for calendar-year defined contribution plans regulated by ERISA and the Internal Revenue Code.
Milliman

Essential Topics in Effective Employee Financial Education

"[S]ix in 10 business owners report seeing employees make decisions that could be detrimental to their long-term retirement savings ... [T]opics many ... would like to include in the financial education curriculum they make available to help their employees make better financial decisions [include]: [1] Common money mistakes ... [2] Debt management and budgeting ... [3] Retirement risks, readiness, and sources of retirement income ... [4] Investing."
MassMutual

Decumulation Confusion

"[Two recent articles provide] intriguing perspectives on the same issue -- one citing a survey of a seemingly irrational fear among those about to retire, and another stating that while a healthy concern for maintaining one's standard of living is quite valid, obsessing about a bear market -- or investment performance in general -- is the wrong approach to maintaining that standard, and should take a back seat to proper risk management."
Cammack Retirement Group

[Advert.]

2019 SPARK National Conference -- June 4-5, National Harbor, MD

Sponsored by SPARK

The retirement services industry's leading event for top marketing, sales, administration and record keeping professionals. Comprehensive agenda is designed to meet the needs of 401(k) Plan Providers, Financial Advisors and Record Keepers.


CalSTRS Wants to Double Co-Investments

"CalSTRS's overall private equity returns for the one-year period ending March 31 totaled 15.5%, the largest return of any asset class. CalSTRS currently has 8.1% of its overall portfolio devoted to private equity, but its long-term target is 13%."
Chief Investment Officer [CIO]

Could the Government Take the Bite Out of RMDs?

"[T]he executive and legislative branches have been floating ideas to reduce the RMD bite ... The changes that are the most likely to happen are the least likely to be meaningful enough for retirees to even notice. However, a legislative proposal from Sen. Rob Portman and Sen. Ben Cardin would dramatically change RMDs for retirees over the next decade, although it might also lead to future RMD shocks."
Morningstar Advisor

The Continuing Convergence of Retail and Retirement Regulatory Oversight

"In [its December 2019 Examination Priorities letter, the SEC] continues and expands on Chairman Clayton's prioritization of 'Main Street' issues. Specifically, the first topic of the letter is 'Matters of importance to retail investors, including seniors and those saving for retirement.' This post focuses on and summarizes these issues and weaves in related perspectives pertaining to ERISA and IRAs on fees and expenses, conflicts of interest, and senior investors."
Drinker Biddle

Annuity Purchase Update: 2018 Interest Rates

"During 2018, the market experienced a favorable upward trend of rising interest rates which generally increased U.S. defined benefit plan funding ratios. As interest rates climbed, plan liabilities dropped which led to a reduction in annuity purchase costs. However, as interest rates began to drop in January 2019, annuity purchase costs began to increase along with plan liabilities."
October Three Consulting

Options for Construction Companies Facing Withdrawal Liability

"[1] Do nothing; [2] Pay it; [3] Use subcontractors; [4] A stock sale of the company; [5] An asset sale of the company; [6] Negotiate with the plan; [7] Terminate your obligations under the CBA."
Greensfelder

Delivering Retirement Benefits to Healthcare and Higher Education Employees (PDF)

"[It] is important to ... meet participants where they are through a thoughtful participant communication strategy and good investment offerings.... Plan sponsors can take immediate steps by evaluating auto-enrollment, auto-escalation, defaulting plan participants into target date funds, and considering the appropriateness of financial advice platforms offered through the retirement plan ... [M]ore 403(b) plan sponsors are recognizing the importance of good governance processes[.]"
T. Rowe Price, Groom Law Group, and Cammack Retirement

[Opinion]

Are U.S. Public Pensions Cooked?

"[To] 'stress test' the funded status of US public pensions or any pension for that matter, you need to look at various scenarios where interest rates decline marginally or precipitously over the next two or three years.... [A] lot of US public pensions have not done this or if they have, they're not sharing their results because it will scare the bejesus out of their members."
Pension Pulse

Press Releases

Most Popular Items in the Previous Issue

Estimates of the Financial Effects on Social Security of the Social Security 2100 Act (PDF)
Office of the Chief Actuary, U.S. Social Security Administration [SSA]

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Lois Baker, J.D., President  loisbaker@benefitslink.com
David Rhett Baker, J.D., Editor and Publisher  davebaker@benefitslink.com
Holly Horton, Business Manager  hollyhorton@benefitslink.com

BenefitsLink Retirement Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9587. Copyright 2019 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 those materials. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notices from copies of the content.

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