Practice Management

Practice Management

Practice Management

By John Iekel5/28/2014 • 0 Comments

This white paper by Lowell M. Smith of Inspira looks at the problems posed by uncashed pension checks, which include handling interest on the funds awaiting transfer, notification requirements and how appropriate corrective actions are, not to mention the added complication of there being no clear guidance from the IRS and the Department of Labor on the subject. This paper examines the regulatory issues surrounding uncashed checks as well as possible solutions for handling them. READ MORE

By John Iekel5/21/2014 • 0 Comments

Exercising the fiduciary duties of prudence and disclosure regarding target date funds (TDFs) can be challenging, and a white paper by Richard Glass of Investment Horizons, Inc. discusses the issues 401(k) fiduciaries face and provides suggestions for addressing them.  READ MORE

By John Iekel5/21/2014 • 0 Comments

A recent study by Financial Engines and Aon Hewitt says that if a plan participant invests all or nearly all of their retirement assets in target date funds (TDFs), it can affect returns. Barrons also weighs in on the issue, quoting Bloomberg’s Ben Steverman.  
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By Fred Barstein5/20/2014 • 0 Comments

With the growth of auto-plan features, plan sponsors are subject to many misconceptions and fears that prevent them from doing the right thing for their employees. Missouri-based Pension Consultants Inc. identifies the seven biggest misconceptions about auto features, and provides solid answers that plan advisors can use with reluctant clients.

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By John Iekel5/16/2014 • 0 Comments

Auto enrollment and escalation can be very useful in boosting plan participation and setting in motion all the good effects that result from that. But like medicines, they should be used properly — and if they’re not, they can cause harm. So argues a new white paper from Milliman, “Auto enrollment: Two Sides to Every Coin.”  READ MORE

By John Iekel5/9/2014 • 0 Comments

Workers are more concerned about — and more interested in doing something about — their retirement income than they are about financing their health care, a new Towers Watson study reveals. In fact, not only are they more concerned about setting something aside for their retirement, a majority said they are even willing to trade other benefits for guaranteed retirement income later.  READ MORE

By John Iekel5/7/2014 • 0 Comments

Much has been made about providing fee disclosure statements to plan sponsors and participants. But a paper by Mercer and the Stanford Center on Longevity, “Retirement Income Statements May Help Avert a Looming Crisis,suggests that participants would be at least as interested — if not moreso — in electronic statements about projected retirement income from their accounts. READ MORE

By John Iekel5/7/2014 • 0 Comments

The Office of Management and Budget has approved revisions to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation’s standard termination, distress termination and missing participants forms and instructions. The new forms and instructions can be found on the Plan Terminations page of PBGC’s website.  READ MORE

By John Iekel5/7/2014 • 0 Comments

The funded status of private- and public-sector pension plans is a classic example of bad news/good news. To wit: Corporate pensions’ funded status fell in April, but only very slightly; and some states’ pensions are in bad shape, but funding of public-sector pension plans overall is improving.  READ MORE

By John Iekel5/6/2014 • 0 Comments

The Great Recession wrought a lot of havoc — and 401(k)s did not escape the maelstrom. Many consider the recovery of the U.S. economy to be very gradual; a recent report by Gallup indicates that the same may be said for that of confidence of those not yet retired in 401(k)s as a primary source of retirement income.  READ MORE

By John Iekel5/1/2014 • 0 Comments

There are things you should do — and not do — in using social media. And it’s especially complicated for those in the retirement plan industry, since social media communications must comply with the rules promulgated by regulatory bodies and others. Join us for an upcoming webcast, “Realities of Social Media in a Regulated Industry,” on Thursday, May 15 from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. EDT. 

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By John Iekel4/30/2014 • 0 Comments

The Moving Ahead for the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) pension-funding stabilization provisions, which have been in effect for two years, are most likely to be applied to the determination of funding requirements of larger plans, those with lower funding ratios and plans with a higher number of inactive participants, a new Society of Actuaries (SOA) study shows. The SOA based its research on the data that defined benefit plans reported on their 2012 Form 5500 filings, the most recent the federal government has made publicly available. READ MORE

By John Iekel4/29/2014 • 0 Comments

Target date funds play an increasingly important role in retirement plans, and monitoring a plan’s TDF options is fast becoming one of the most important fiduciary obligations plan sponsors face in managing their retirement plan investment lineup. According to a white paper by Cammack Retirement Group, TDFs hold more than half a trillion dollars, including DC plan assets, and there’s no end in sight. READ MORE

By John Iekel4/27/2014 • 0 Comments

More and more employers are making Roth accounts available within their DC plans — and more employees are taking them up on the offer, according to a new white paper from Aon Hewitt. The number of employers that offer Roths within their DC plans more than quadrupled over the last six years, hitting 50 percent by last year. 
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By John Iekel4/21/2014 • 0 Comments

Pension funding status slipped in March and liabilities grew, says a report by consulting and actuarial firm Milliman, Inc. Milliman reports that for 100 of the largest U.S. DB plans, pension liabilities grew to the tune of a collective $5 billion. Milliman blamed a drop in the monthly discount rate to 4.30 percent, down 0.08 from February’s 4.32 percent.  READ MORE

By John Iekel4/14/2014 • 0 Comments

The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation has proposed allowing an employee to roll over funds from a DC plan into a DB plan.The proposal, which the PBGC issued on April 1 and was published in the Federal Register on April 2, is intended to increase returns by making rollovers easier and removing limits that could inhibit retirement saving.  READ MORE

By Fred Barstein4/14/2014 • 0 Comments

Responding to the lack of access to work-site retirement plans, Illinois became the latest state to propose a mandatory retirement plan for private-sector employers. The “Illinois Secure Choice Savings Program” would be a portable IRA-like plan mandatory for all companies with 25 or more employees that have been in existence for at least two years.

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By John Iekel4/13/2014 • 0 Comments

The funding ratio of DB benefit plans sponsored by employers in the S&P 1500 offer fell slightly in March. Mercer found that the funding ratios of those companies’ DB plans slipped to 85 percent; it had been 87 percent in February.  READ MORE

By Fred Barstein4/13/2014 • 0 Comments

While some mid-market and small record keepers have been heralding the equitable allocation of revenue sharing, very few if any micro market providers offer it. But since June 2013, as a new white paper by Fred Reish tells us, Paychex has offered the service to the smallest of plans.  READ MORE

By John Iekel4/7/2014 • 0 Comments

More than 50 million employees in the United States participate in a 401(k) plan, and recent research shows strong employee interest in contributing part of one’s salary to achieve a comfortable retirement. Employers have a variety of features they can incorporate in the plans they offer, and they can use them to increase not only assets, but employee participation and involvement too.  READ MORE

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