Technical Resources

Technical Resources covers the nuts and bolts of the retirement plan market, focusing on IRS and DOL regulations, ERISA litigation, fiduciary governance and more.

 

 


Technical Resources

Technical Resources

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 Iekel4/14/2014 • 0 Comments

New guidance from the IRS may make the plan-to-plan rollover process a little smoother. Revenue Ruling 2014-9, issued on April 3, is intended to make it easier for plan participants to consolidate their retirement savings accounts by making it easier for them to move assets from one employer plan to another.  READ MORE

By Fred Barstein4/13/2014 • 0 Comments

The DoL’s expanded fiduciary definition rule could reduce retirement savings by 20 to 40 percent, according to a study commissioned by Davis & Harman LLP on behalf of a coalition of financial services organizations, including banks, insurance companies, brokerage firms and mutual funds that service the retirement industry.  READ MORE

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 Ronald Triche4/12/2014 • 0 Comments

The IRS, in Notice 2014-19 and related FAQs, says that retirement plans have to recognize same-gender spouses and spells out how. The notice and FAQs, which the IRS issued April 4, are a follow-up on Revenue Ruling (Rev. Rul.) 2013-17, which provided general guidance on the tax implications of the Supreme Court’s decision in U.S. V. Windsor (the DOMA case). Notice 2014-19 and the FAQs specifically focus on retirement plans.  READ MORE

By Craig Hoffman4/11/2014 • 0 Comments

The Department of Labor released its long-promised proposal to require that a guide or summary accompany a covered service provider’s 408(b)2) disclosures on March 11. The final 408(b)(2) regulations, which became effective July 1, 2012, left this question open, with the DOL promising to revisit the issue in the future. Release of the March 11 proposed rule makes good on that promise. READ MORE

By John Iekel4/11/2014 • 0 Comments

“I’m a fiduciary? What does that mean?” Strange as it may seem, there are plenty of plan sponsors who ask that question — more than half of them, in fact, according to Unified Trust Company CEO Dr. Gregory W. Kasten. In an ASPPA webcast, “Breaking Down the Many Fiduciary Roles, Obligations and Service Models,” he offered information to dispel the fog regarding what a fiduciary does and can do.  READ MORE

By John Iekel4/10/2014 • 0 Comments

Plan advisors are well aware that one of their clients’ newest — not to mention most publicized and even controversial — demands is fee disclosure. To meet that demand, some advisors are going a step further. Investment News reports that some advisors are providing fee policy statements in addition to the required information. READ MORE

By John Iekel4/10/2014 • 0 Comments

Many employers match a certain percentage of what their employees defer into their 401(k)s. In the wake of the recent debacle at AOL, Investment News looked at the advantages and disadvantages of providing the match on an annual basis. READ MORE

By John Iekel4/9/2014 • 0 Comments

Your clients offer 401(k) plans, and all have 401(k) plan committees. Those committees have fiduciary responsibility, and it’s in your clients’ interest to make sure they are fulfilling their duties. They can do that through meetings of those committees and quarterly reviews, our friends at the 401khelpcenter remind us, and offer some tips on those functions. READ MORE

By John Iekel4/8/2014 • 0 Comments

Offering participants too many options can discourage enrollment. But what’s the “sweet spot” in terms of the optimal number of enrollment options? A test by Fidelity found that 78 percent of participants preferred a three-part enrollment option — and that those who chose that option contributed more.

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By John Iekel4/7/2014 • 0 Comments

IRS guidance and a pointed reminder from an industry group illustrate the increased frequency and importance of rollovers, not to mention that they are piquing the interest of federal regulators and interest groups.   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

By John Iekel4/7/2014 • 0 Comments

Sometimes rules are made to be broken — even when they are long-standing and seem rock-solid. The 4 percent rule is one, and “Breaking the 4 Percent Rule,” a recent paper by J.P. Morgan makes the case for that. READ MORE

By John Iekel4/6/2014 • 0 Comments

Municipal bankruptcies like Detroit’s bring into sharp relief the effect such financial strains can have on pensions, as well as the effect of what local and state governments do. But there is good news — most states have taken steps to protect public-sector pensions.  READ MORE

By John Iekel4/6/2014 • 0 Comments

Target date funds reflect that flexibility and engagement have become firmly entrenched aspects of retirement plan management for both participants and plan sponsors. In a NAPA webinar, “Target Date Trends and Evaluation,” T. Rowe Price’s Jerome A. Clark discussed how TDFs reflect greater discretion over how funds are managed. READ MORE

By John Iekel4/6/2014 • 0 Comments

Is your pension plan fully funded? The answer is relevant to more than individual participants’ accounts, as Bob Collie posits in the Fiduciary Matters Blog. A plan’s funding level also affects how a plan’s assets are allocated and invested, as well as pension de-risking.  READ MORE

By John Iekel4/6/2014 • 0 Comments

Saying that she is troubled by 401(k) providers that are circumventing the 408(b)(2) fee disclosure rule’s demands, EBSA’s Phyllis Borzi warned providers March 11 that they need to do a better job at following the rule’s requirements to provide information that is easy to understand. READ MORE

By John Iekel4/5/2014 • 0 Comments

What do DB benefit plans, DC plans and 403(b) annuity arrangements have in common? Yes, there’s the obvious. But also, they all are retirement plans that must file the dreaded and onerous Form 5500. And for most of them, the clock has begun to tick on filing the form that reports on 2013. READ MORE

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