Retirement Plans Newsletter

December 1, 2020 logo logo
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Webcasts, Conferences

Fiduciary Oversight: The Bad, the Ugly, and the Really, Really Good
January 19, 2021 WEBCAST
Pension Education Council of Atlanta [PECA]

2021 Employee Ownership Conference
April 20, 2021 WEBCAST
National Center for Employee Ownership [NCEO]

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[Guidance Overview]

Financial Factors in Selecting Plan Investments: Final Rule

"The final rule ... prohibits fiduciaries from selecting investments based solely on non-pecuniary considerations. However, in the case of participant-directed plans ... plan fiduciaries may in some circumstances offer ESG or other investment options that focus on non-pecuniary interests as one of the plan's available investment alternatives, provided that generally applicable fiduciary duties are otherwise satisfied in connection with the investment." Icon to read more

Schneider Downs

[Sponsored] -- Look at us before you Renew!

Don't renew your Compliance subscription year after year because you always have. We can help! Continually updated -- modern -- fast and easy way to get answers. Upgrade and save money too! Contact us at: or 612-605-2266 Learn more

Sponsored by Burrmont Compliance Labs LLC

Exceptional Usefulness and Quality iconIncome Is the Outcome: A Review of Lifetime Income Solution (PDF)

21 pages. "The sole focus of DC plans has historically been to accumulate assets during the working years, with little support provided to participants in retirement.... The 'landing gear' of our DC system are solutions designed to help participants convert their accumulated retirement balances into lifetime income. This paper provides a review of product types available to do so." Icon to read more

Russell Investments

Overtime Is Up and Bonuses Are Down: Will This Year's Irregular Compensation Impact Our Retirement Plan?

"[An] alternative definition of compensation ... can be a powerful tool to enhance plan design and target your retirement plan dollars according to your overall goals. As with any plan design, it's important that you carefully consider any excluded compensation and review as compensation structures change over time. Likewise, it's worth remembering that there is no bright-line test to determine whether a plan passes compensation ratio testing each year. So, it's important to make sure that the definition of compensation is within reason both numerically and circumstantially." Icon to read more


Participant Steps to Cyber Security

"Here's some things you, your clients, and their participants should check out ... [1] Find your account(s) ... [2] Make sure 'they' can find you, too ... [3] Change the 'locks' ... [4] Check your beneficiaries ... [5] Get a 'ready' read." Icon to read more

National Tax-Deferred Savings Association [NTSA]

The Basics of Terminating a DC Plan

"From updating the plan with statutory amendments to filing the final Form 5500, there are many details to attend to when terminating a defined contribution plan." Icon to read more

PLANSPONSOR; free registration may be required

How Small 401(k) Plan Sponsors Can Best Address Their Unique Needs

"The biggest issue when it comes to access is cost. It's not just the plan sponsor's sensitivity to higher costs. It's the service provider's ability to keep those costs low.... [T]here's a disincentive for financial firms to invest the time necessary to help smaller plans grow to a critical mass size. This puts small plan sponsors at a further disadvantage.... Complicating matters is the fact that executives at smaller companies tend to have multiple responsibilities. This means they will often opt for the quickest solution." Icon to read more

Fiduciary News; free registration required

'Sustainable Investment Policy Act' Would Mandate Consideration of ESG Factors

"The purpose of the Sustainable Investment Policy Act [to be introduced in the House by Rep. Andy Levin (D-Mich.), vice-chair of the House Education & Labor Committee] is to require retirement investors and fiduciaries to consider environmental, social, and governance -- or 'ESG' -- factors when making investments that are covered by [ERISA] and the Investment Advisers Act of 1940.... The bill outlines six categories of ESG factors investors must consider and make clear to retirement plan beneficiaries." Icon to read more

Heartland Capital Strategies

Which Fiduciary to Hire: 3(21) or 3(38) Fiduciaries?

"The basic difference between a 3(21) vs. 3(38) fiduciary is that in a 3(21) arrangement the employer shares fiduciary responsibility for investment decisions with the adviser and in a 3(38) arrangement the employer has no fiduciary responsibility for investment decisions. However, the employer does retain the fiduciary responsibility to review the 3(38) fiduciary." Icon to read more

Lawton Retirement Plan Consultants

Worker Participation in Employer-Sponsored Pensions: Data in Brief

"About 70% of all U.S. workers have access to employer-sponsored pensions, and about 55% of U.S. workers participate in employer-sponsored pensions. Access and participation rates vary with various worker attributes. These attributes include whether the workers are full-time or part-time, whether they work in the private or public sector, and whether or not they belong to a union. The data also classify access and participation rates by the average wages of workers' occupations and the number of employees at workers' places of employment. [R43439, updated Dec. 1, 2020]" Icon to read more

Congressional Research Service [CRS]

New 403(b) Survey Finds Signs of Strength, Concern

"While the vast majority of organizations are not planning on changing their employer contribution levels this year, nearly a third of higher education institutions say they either have, or will by year-end, reduce or suspend contributions to their 403(b) plans. Ten percent of all respondents have suspended or reduced the matching contribution and 7.5% have suspended or reduced the non-matching contribution (some plans have both types of contributions)." Icon to read more

American Retirement Association [ARA]

Implementing an ESOP: Decisions You Need to Make

"[1] Determine employee eligibility ... [2] Determine ESOP vesting period ... [3] Determine annual contributions ... [4] Determine distribution standards ... [5] Ensure your plan meets regulatory guidelines." Icon to read more

Meaden & Moore

Growing Number of Americans Are Facing Early Retirement

"A report ... found that 2.9 million workers ages 55 to 70 have left the labor force since March.... Researchers note that if these exits continued at the same pace over the ensuing three months, an additional 1.1 million workers in this age group may leave the workforce. That would be a total of 4 million people potentially pushed into retirement due to the pandemic's related economic downturn." Icon to read more

U.S. News & World Report

FAS87 ASC715 Discount Rates and Moody's Rates, November 30, 2020

An unofficial monthly report of the Moody's Daily Long-term Corporate Bond Yield Averages and Moody's Daily Treasury Yield Averages (used as benchmarks by some corporate pension plans). Icon to read more

David Rigby, via BenefitsLink Message Boards

Executive Compensation
and Nonqualified Plans

2020 Year-End Key Executive Compensation and Employee Benefits Considerations

"COVID-19 has ... had an impact on executive compensation and employee benefits, and given rise to a number of new issues and considerations. These compensation issues present challenges for companies seeking to incentivize and retain key employees in the midst of the current economic conditions while balancing competing responsibilities to various stakeholders.... [1] Performance goals and metrics ... [2] Equity plan share reserves/annual equity grants ... [3] Compensation/benefits reductions/restructuring ... [4] Nonqualified deferred compensation ... [5] Variable hour employee benefits eligibility." Icon to read more

Akin Gump

Selected Discussions
on the BenefitsLink Message Boards

► It's easy to sign up and participate in discussions! Post answers, ask questions, create custom feeds and views. Join your peers (and potential referral sources or customers)—there is no charge.

How Do You Invest a Retirement Plan with Age-Diverse Workforce, Without Participant-Directed Investments?

"Imagine an individual-account (defined-contribution) retirement plan that does not provide participant-directed investment. Imagine the participants range from 18-year-olds to workers in their 90s. If you were the plan's trustee or investment manager with complete authority and responsibility to decide the plan's investment policy, what would you do?" Icon to read more

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Press Releases

OneDigital Acquires Tegler Benefits Group
OneDigital Health and Benefits

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BenefitsLink Retirement Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9587. Copyright 2020, 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, 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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