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Nevin Adams

Nevin Adams

Nevin Adams

By Nevin Adams7/30/2013 • 0 Comments

As most retirement plan advisors are well aware, behavioral finance drives much of the discussion around retirement plan design innovations these days, for the very simple reason that it seems to help explain what might otherwise be viewed as irrational behaviors. READ MORE

By Nevin Adams7/23/2013 • 4 Comments

As advisors know, over the last several years, the trend in employment-based retirement plans has been to put in place structures to make more decisions for workers through the expansion of automatic enrollment plan designs. READ MORE

By Nevin Adams7/16/2013 • 0 Comments

Recently, we looked at how the trends in employment-based retirement plans and employment-based health plans seem to be heading in opposite directions; fewer choices for workers to make in the former, and more in the latter. READ MORE

By Nevin Adams7/9/2013 • 0 Comments

In recent days, word that the Federal Reserve sees an end to its current policies has brought some short-term volatility to the stock market. An EBRI analysis includes warning signs about longer-term consequences that policy makers should consider. READ MORE

Fred Barstein

Fred Barstein

Fred Barstein

By Fred Barstein7/31/2013 • 0 Comments

Though it’s important, the SEC’s initiative to create a uniform fiduciary rule under Dodd-Frank is not a front burner issue at the Commission. For example, the issue of crowd funding is more important, SEC Chair Mary Jo White stated at a recent Senate Banking Committee hearing. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/30/2013 • 0 Comments

As part of its “brandscape” reports, Cogent Research asked advisors to rate mutual funds based on which ones are best positioned to increase their market share with the advisor. The best-positioned funds were: READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/29/2013 • 1 Comments

While there’s no going back — and perhaps no good reason to even want to — there is a price to be paid for participant disclosure, according to research by EBRI. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/29/2013 • 0 Comments

With the federal government looking for any and all ways to generate revenue, there’s speculation that stretch IRAs are likely to be cut, according to a recent article by two law professors. Stretch IRAs allow a beneficiary to take either a lump sum payment or withdraw over a number years based on RMD rules and their beneficiaries’ ages. Meanwhile, the IRA continues to grow tax free. Critics argue that stretch IRAs go beyond the intent to incent people to save for retirement, and have become a wealth transfer tool. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/29/2013 • 0 Comments

According to academic research from 1997-2011, investors will reward funds that outperform their benchmarks when the market is up but not when it’s down. When the market experienced negative returns, the research found, there was no significant effect on flows when comparing funds that outperformed their benchmark versus funds that underperformed. Why? READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/26/2013 • 0 Comments

A federal judge ruled that unions could not go to state court to fight Detroit’s Chapter 9 bankruptcy filing, but they could still argue in federal court that the bankruptcy filing was improper and violated Michigan’s constitution. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/26/2013 • 0 Comments

According to British politician Ed Miliband, “…the only time we made progress, we did it by challenging the conventional wisdom.” Taking that challenge, Schwab’s Rande Speigelman exposes what he calls the Five Big Lies about retirement. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/26/2013 • 1 Comments

As NAPA’s 1st Annual DC Fly-in Forum approaches on Sept. 17-18, many top DC Congressional leaders and policymakers have agreed to speak, with more expected. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/25/2013 • 0 Comments

Though appealing in theory, the use of managed accounts (MAs) in DC plans has not only been low but also seems to be declining. According to research by the PSCA, only 3.6% of plans offer MAs, and plans using MAs as a QDIA have dropped from 7.2% in 2010 to 1.2% in 2012. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/24/2013 • 0 Comments

People are watching the Detroit bankruptcy filing carefully, wondering whether it is the start of a trend for other cities and municipalities in financial trouble – many driven by underfunded pension plans. Many state and local pensions have either invested poorly or have not realistically calculated their liabilities using fuzzy math. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/22/2013 • 0 Comments

Fee disclosure may be ready to hit IRAs. After the recent GAO report that some IRA providers made misleading claims about fees to undercover GAO reps who were posing as people with rollovers, a few Senators called for further investigation. Now, FINRA has weighed in with a recent Notice about misleading advertisement by members about IRA fees. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/22/2013 • 0 Comments

If you’re looking for retirement and medical benefits, it’s better to work for larger companies or state and local entities, according to a recent Bureau of Labor Statistics report covering data through March 2013. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/22/2013 • 0 Comments

With the societal shift from reliance on DB plans to DC plans, there could be a number of unforeseen and unintended consequences. The drop in DB coverage from 1985 to 2011 has been precipitous, from 112,000 companies to just 25,500. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/19/2013 • 0 Comments

As part of the deal struck by Senate Democrats with Senate Republicans to fast-track a handful of the president’s nominations, Thomas Perez was confirmed July 18 as the new Secretary of Labor. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/18/2013 • 0 Comments

Like most complicated questions, the answer is yes and no. It is possible for a plan fiduciary to outsource the administrative reporting and disclosure requirements to a third party under ERISA section 3(16) but there are legitimate concerns and caveats. In a thoughtful article by ERISA legal eagle Marcia Wagner in the recent Plan Consultant magazine published by ASPPA, the issues are clearly and thoughtfully explored. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/18/2013 • 0 Comments

Dynamic House freshman Rep. Ann Wagner (R-MO) has agreed to speak at NAPA’s inaugural DC Fly-in Forum Sept. 17-18 in Washington. Wagner sponsored the Retail Protection Act that, should it become law, would delay the rule making process currently underway at the Department of Labor on the definition of a fiduciary. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/18/2013 • 0 Comments

When given the choice between a high-cost, no-deductible health care plan and a cheaper one with a high deductible, 60% of employees choose the cheaper plan, according to a recent study. As part of the cheaper plan, employees are offered an HSA to which the employer contributes. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/17/2013 • 3 Comments

Time flies when you’re having fun (or perhaps when focused on other things) — the 2013 annual requirement for fee disclosure under 408(b)(2) and 404(a)(5) is fast approaching. The law firm of Howley Troxell provides some simple guidance for plan sponsors, including: READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/16/2013 • 0 Comments

Wells Fargo has released Q1 2013 data that reveals some interesting developments, including an uptick in Roth usage by younger people, a move toward HSAs and concern about usage of managed products by new hires. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/16/2013 • 0 Comments

A study by the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research based on 429,000 self-employed workers indicates that there is a 3% reduction in Alzheimer’s for every extra year worked. Prior research has shown that exercise, social engagement, positive outlook and diet have positive effects on staving off the disease. Now working longer could be added to that list — perhaps proving the “use it or lose it” theory. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/15/2013 • 2 Comments

Walt Bettinger, Schwab’s CEO, laments how the current system is rigged against individuals buying stocks, setting out four reasons why the number of investors owning stocks or mutual funds, or investing in a self-directed 401(k) or IRA, has dropped from 67% in 2002 to 52% in 2013. Bettinger lays out the reasons for consumer withdrawal from the market, along with some potential solutions. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/15/2013 • 0 Comments

We’re not sure how tall Morningstar’s Adam Zoll is, so we can only assume he is called “the short answer man” because of his brevity — which is always appreciated. This week Zoll tackles the following questions and provides concise answers: READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/12/2013 • 0 Comments

Well, maybe not this year, but firms with private offerings like hedge funds, private equity and other alternatives can now advertise, as the SEC has lifted its ban under the JOBS Act. More practically, hedge funds will start using social media, websites, conferences and traditional media to get the word out. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/12/2013 • 0 Comments

M&A deal flow for money managers picked up in the first half of 2013 compared with the same period last year, with 10% more transactions and a whopping 114% more assets — some of which, but not all, is due to market increases. Deals were relatively small, with the average under $10 billion — experts point to a back-up of deals at the end of 2012. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/11/2013 • 12 Comments

Is revenue sharing a plan asset? This issue and others were addressed in a recent DOL opinion letter (Advisory Opinion 2013-03A) addressed to the Groom Law Group concerning a plan administered by Principal. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/11/2013 • 0 Comments

According to the DOL’s semiannual regulatory agenda indicating which rules the department plans to issue, the redefinition-of-fiduciary rule, which DOL’s Employee Benefits Security Administration calls “Conflict of Interest Rule—Investment Advice,” will be re-proposed in October. Apparently, October will be a busy month on Constitution Ave., with two other rules also slated for release. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/11/2013 • 0 Comments

Money managers’ AUM rose to $62.4 trillion in 2012, according to a study by the Boston Consulting Group. That figure, which surpasses the previous record (set in 2007, before the Great Recession), was driven primarily by market growth of global equities and fixed income. Profits also rose to 37% of revenue but still lagged pre-recession margins by 15%, with European managers 31% below 2007 results and U.S. managers 10% higher. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/10/2013 • 0 Comments

All good things must come to an end — even for Vanguard, which has enjoyed success in recent years riding the passive and TDF waves. In June the company experienced its first month of net redemptions in nearly 20 years, dating back to December 1994. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/9/2013 • 0 Comments

One of the original missions of NAPA was to make sure that the people in Washington — both regulators and members of Congress — understand what really dedicated and experienced plan advisors do to help their clients plan for retirement. In addition, NAPA hoped to be able to give advisors access to the leaders in Washington who are making important decisions affecting the future of the retirement industry, from IRAs to DB and DC plans. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/9/2013 • 0 Comments

The question of what happens when interest rates rise has a serious impact on stable value funds but, according to comments by leading investment consultants and recent research, plan sponsors are not abandoning ship — though they are concerned. There are a lot of questions about SVFs, but so far, plans are holding firm. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/8/2013 • 1 Comments

We all know that loans and hardship withdrawals seriously deplete savings in retirement. A new infographic from Fidelity based on data from more than 20,000 plans and 12.3 million participants illustrates the point in a way that might help participants think twice. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/8/2013 • 2 Comments

Should auto-enrollment be required? The answer is clearly “yes,” according to Alicia Munnell, director of the Retirement Research Center at Boston College. Though participation rates saw a major boost after the 2006 PPA, those spikes in participation rates have leveled off, according to Munnell — prompting some to call for new legislation. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/5/2013 • 1 Comments

A rarely mentioned factor is choosing a TDF is the deferral rate the TDF manager assumes for participants using the fund. Shouldn’t a plan with an average 10% rate be treated differently than one with a 3% rate? This question highlights the major flaw of TDFs: One size does not fit all investors or plans. According to Glenn Dial, head of Allianz’s DCIO group, however, their TDF analysis tool takes into account the assumed deferral rate of the TDF and can help a plan pick the right TDF based on its current deferral rate. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/5/2013 • 0 Comments

When a former employee returns to the company, should that person be treated as a new employee and be forced to satisfy eligibility requirements? When should they be allowed into the plan? The answer is not as clear as it seems — as detailed in a recent briefing by Relius. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/3/2013 • 0 Comments

In the 12 months ending Oct. 1, 2012, more than 300 EBSA investigators in 10 regional offices closed 3,566 investigations, 72.1% of which resulted in a total of $1.27 billion in fines. Understanding the process that investigators follow in conducting an audit can take the fear out of it and produce better results. Jennifer E. Eller of the Groom Law Group reviews that process and provides insights on what to expect and how to best respond. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/2/2013 • 0 Comments

Morningstar has released a comprehensive and far-reaching review and analysis of the TDF market that includes results from Q1 2013. TDFs using passive building blocks took in more money than actives for the first time, and should overtake them by 2019. Prices are less than half for passive strategies, with some at 18-19 BPs. And fees continue to fall, dropping from 104 BPs in 2008, to 99 in 2011, and 91 in 2012. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/2/2013 • 0 Comments

Some people concerned about rough markets ahead are turning to hedged mutual funds, according to a Wall Street Journal article. Though still a fraction of the overall market, hedged mutual funds keep attracting assets even as performance lags. Along with mutual fund providers, private equity firms like Blackstone and traditional hedge funds are moving aggressively into the market. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/1/2013 • 0 Comments

In a new package of rules filed by FINRA with the SEC, gone is the previously proposed requirement that broker dealers supervise non-securities-related businesses — apparently as a result of industry protests. FINRA was quick to point out that registered reps will still be held to high standards under the current Rule 2010. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/1/2013 • 0 Comments

The auto DC plan is the talk of the industry (along with TDFs), but we’re still learning how to best manage these relatively new tools to improve participant outcomes while being sensitive to employers’ concerns. In a newly released white paper, the Defined Contribution Institutional Investment Association (DCIIA), using research from EBRI, outlines best practices on implementing auto plan features to best improve outcomes. READ MORE

By Fred Barstein7/1/2013 • 0 Comments

The conventional wisdom today is that DB and the relatively new cash balance plans are better than DC plans like 401(k)s. But according to research by EBRI based on a variety of simulated analyses, participants do better in a 401(k) plan than in a DB or cash balance plan. READ MORE

Kathleen Beichert

Kathleen Beichert

Kathleen Beichert

By Kathleen Beichert7/8/2013 • 0 Comments

Foreign and domestic fixed income markets have reacted strongly to the prospect of U.S. Federal Reserve tapering — prompting Richard Fisher, president of the Dallas Federal Reserve, to liken big money to “feral hogs” in a recent interview. READ MORE

John Carl

John Carl

By John Carl7/31/2013 • 0 Comments

Responding to a question from an advisor in Wisconsin, the ERISA consultants at the Columbia Management Retirement Learning Center Resource Desk addressed a common inquiry involving the application of fiduciary standards to retirement plans. READ MORE

By John Carl7/24/2013 • 4 Comments

Responding to a question from an advisor in California, the ERISA consultants at the Columbia Management Retirement Learning Center Resource Desk addressed a common inquiry involving savings incentive match plans for employees (SIMPLE) IRA plans. READ MORE

By John Carl7/16/2013 • 0 Comments

Responding to a recent call from a financial advisor in New Jersey, the ERISA consultants at the Columbia Management Learning Center Resource Desk addressed a common inquiry involving the new 3.8% tax on Net Investment Income and qualified retirement plan and IRA assets. READ MORE

By John Carl7/3/2013 • 1 Comments

Responding to a question from an advisor in Massachusetts, the ERISA consultants at the Columbia Management Retirement Learning Center Resource Desk addressed a common inquiry involving individuals who participate in both a 403(b) plan and a DC plan, a SEP plan or a SIMPLE IRA plan. READ MORE

Marcus Chandler

Marcus Chandler

Marcus Chandler

By Marcus Chandler7/24/2013 • 0 Comments

It goes without saying that good references can be an invaluable resource to help you close new business. But it is those situations where prospects are on the fence about making a change and hiring you – or when you are in a close competitive bid situation with other retirement practices – where references can play a critical deciding role. READ MORE

Warren Cormier

Warren Cormier

Warren Cormier

By Warren Cormier7/2/2013 • 0 Comments

The Number 1 driver of overall satisfaction is the provider’s ability to demonstrate that the value they deliver is well worth the fees and other costs. But how does a provider demonstrate value? In the second part of a two-part discussion, Warren Cormier of Boston Research Group looks at the role of service excellence. READ MORE

By Warren Cormier7/1/2013 • 1 Comments

Since 2000, the Boston Research Group’s DCP studies have been measuring plan sponsors’ loyalty and satisfaction with their record keepers and advisors (i.e., providers). The Number 1 driver of overall satisfaction is the provider’s ability to demonstrate that the value they deliver is well worth the fees and other costs. Importantly, loyalty is also highly correlated with value. But how does a provider demonstrate value? READ MORE

Sheri Fitts

Sheri Fitts

Sheri Fitts

By Sheri Fitts7/19/2013 • 1 Comments

Have you given your website a checkup lately? Once your website is up and running, the work isn’t finished. READ MORE

Brian Graff, Esq.

Brian Graff, Esq.

Brian is the Executive Director of NAPA. In this capacity he oversees NAPA’s operations. As a member of the Leadership Council, he charts the strategic direction for the organization. Brian also serves as ASPPA’s Executive Director/CEO — a post he has held since 1996.

He has been named one of 401kWire’s “50 Most Influential Persons in the 401(k) Industry” every year since 2007.

An attorney and certified public accountant, Brian was formerly Legislation Counsel to the U.S. Congress Joint Committee on Taxation. Prior to working on Capitol Hill, he was associated with The Groom Law Group, in Washington, DC, which specializes in employee benefits. He received his doctoral degree in law, cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania Law School in Philadelphia. He holds a bachelor of science in accounting with distinction from Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y.

By Brian Graff, Esq.7/25/2013 • 5 Comments

As we reported last week, a Yale University Law School professor sent letters to over 6,000 plan sponsors suggesting their 401(k) plans were “high cost” and, among other things, implying that they may be violating their fiduciary obligations. We pointed out the serious flaws in the data being used by the professor as well as the general inappropriateness of the tone of the letters. READ MORE

By Brian Graff, Esq.7/15/2013 • 14 Comments

We have recently learned that a Yale Law School professor has sent a letter to thousands of 401(k) plan sponsors. The professor is doing a “study” on the financial impact of plan fees and has identified the employers receiving the letter as sponsoring a “potential high-cost plan.” READ MORE

By Brian Graff, Esq.7/8/2013 • 4 Comments

The uniform fiduciary standard has become a holy grail of sorts for the financial advisor industry. Legends such as John Bogle tout how it is the only way to ensure that the interests of average investors will be protected. Proponents of the single standard stress that the current dichotomy between the fiduciary standard applicable to registered investment advisors and the suitability standard utilized by registered representatives is confusing to investors who fail to appreciate that certain advisors are not "acting in their interest." Only with a uniform fiduciary standard, they say, will investors be safe from the current, misleading bifurcated regime. READ MORE

Ray Harmon

Ray Harmon

Ray Harmon

By Ray Harmon7/29/2013 • 2 Comments

I was excited to hear that President Obama would be addressing the issue of retirement security in a series of speeches last week focusing on his policy agenda. That is, until I actually heard him do it. Speaking at Knox College in Galesburg, IL, on July 24, the president took the stage and made an irresponsibly misleading assertion about our so-called “upside down” retirement system. READ MORE

Craig Hoffman

Craig Hoffman

Craig Hoffman

By Craig Hoffman7/23/2013 • 0 Comments

The Department of Labor has provided relief to plan administrators by announcing a transitional enforcement policy regarding the due date for the “second round” of participant disclosures under the new 404(a)(5) regulations. READ MORE

Jennifer McKibben

Jennifer McKibben

By Jennifer McKibben7/29/2013 • 0 Comments

Last week’s top five most-read stories on NAPA Net reflected keen interest in Yale’s response to Brian Graff’s original “Love Letters from Yale” post, a six-month delay on the second round of participant fee disclosure, the DOL’s proposed change to 408(b)(2) disclosure regs, a Yale professor’s letter to thousands of plan sponsors, and the five big lies of retirement planning. READ MORE

By Jennifer McKibben7/23/2013 • 0 Comments

Last week’s top 5 most-read stories on NAPA Net reflected keen interest in a Yale Law professor’s letter to thousands of plan sponsors, the fast approaching 2013 requirement for fee disclosure, increased popularity of Roth 401(k)s among younger employees, consumer withdrawal from the stock market, and EBSA’s Philadelphia region’s fee-focused 401(k) audit. READ MORE

By Jennifer McKibben7/18/2013 • 1 Comments

As the economy improves and the job market strengthens, many companies are opting to enhance their employee stock purchase plans in an effort to improve their benefits package, according to recent research from Fidelity. Alas, employee participation in these plans remains fairly low. READ MORE

By Jennifer McKibben7/15/2013 • 0 Comments

Last week’s top five most-read posts on NAPA Net reflected keen interest in Sen. Orrin Hatch’s comprehensive retirement bill, revenue sharing, nuances of the “not so uniform” fiduciary standard, Brian Graff’s take on the ‘blank slate’ approach to tax reform, and an infographic representing the impact of loans and hardships. READ MORE

By Jennifer McKibben7/12/2013 • 1 Comments

While the popularity of the 401(k) plan has soared in recent years, many investors may not have given much thought to why it works so well. Some factors are within an investor’s control, while others are not. If investors want to achieve retirement success, this Fiduciary News column notes, they need to understand the four primary cogs that contribute to the 401(k)’s success. (Caution: Column includes automotive metaphors.) READ MORE

By Jennifer McKibben7/9/2013 • 0 Comments

Last week’s top 5 most-read posts on NAPA Net reflected keen interest in understanding what to expect from a DOL audit, Brian Graff’s take on the proposed ‘Blank Slate’ approach to tax reform, EBRI’s finding that participants do better in DC plans, how a provider best demonstrates value, and FINRA’s waning supervision of outside business activity. READ MORE

By Jennifer McKibben7/1/2013 • 0 Comments

Last week’s top 5 most-read posts on NAPA Net reflected keen interest in the Supreme Court’s DOMA decision, Cigna’s excessive fee lawsuit settlement, the New York Times and 401(k) fees, comparing ERISA fidelity bonds to fiduciary liability insurance, and Brian Graff’s take on the announced ‘blank slate’ approach to tax reform. READ MORE

John Ortman

John Ortman

By John Ortman7/31/2013 • 0 Comments

In the aggregate, how bad is the problem created by participants who leave their retirement accounts behind when they move to a new employer? Among other data points: 45% of employees leave their retirement accounts behind; there are an estimated 15 million “orphan” accounts; at an annual cost between $25 and $35 per orphan account, the total cost is between $375 million and $525 million a year. READ MORE

By John Ortman7/22/2013 • 0 Comments

Investment advisory firms are giving up in the battle to keep social media out of their shops. Instead, they’re loosening bans and allowing more use of social media while putting appropriate policies and procedures in place, notes Investment News columnist Mark Schoeff Jr. READ MORE

By John Ortman7/18/2013 • 0 Comments

After a little more than seven weeks' worth of voting — totaling more than 11,000 votes — here are the top 10 ideas in our online poll of ideas for sessions at next year’s NAPA 401(k) Summit: READ MORE

By John Ortman7/16/2013 • 0 Comments

On July 9, the DOL issued an amendment to DOL Prohibited Transaction Exemption (PTE) 2007-5 (a.k.a. the underwriters exemptions) that replaces the current definition of "rating agency" with a definition referencing generic rating agency requirements. A legal analysis from the Practical Law Company provides a good explanation. READ MORE

By John Ortman7/15/2013 • 1 Comments

Yesterday we posted about Walt Bettinger, Schwab’s CEO, lamenting how the current system is rigged against individuals buying stocks ("Individual Investors Flee Stocks"). As we noted, Bettinger is one of the heads of a U.S. major financial service firm who started his career in the DC market. The post included a two-part quiz: Can you name the other three execs and where they started, along with Bettinger’s roots? — and promised the answers today. READ MORE

By John Ortman7/12/2013 • 0 Comments

After a little more than six weeks' worth of voting — totaling more than 9,000 votes — here are the top ideas in our online poll of ideas for sessions at next year’s NAPA 401(k) Summit: READ MORE

By John Ortman7/12/2013 • 0 Comments

Especially given today’s market volatility and legal environment, plan sponsors are generally looking for ways to manage the risks associated with serving as an ERISA fiduciary — and specifically, for ways to help mitigate the risks that arise from selecting and monitoring a plan’s investment lineup. Even where agreements set limits and boundaries, a plan committee’s actions may dictate fiduciary responsibility. READ MORE

By John Ortman7/9/2013 • 0 Comments

Last week we posted about Aon Hewitt’s 2013 “Hot Topics in Retirement” report, focusing on participation and saving rates. The report also included a raft of benchmarking information on investments and account activity. Let’s take a look at those areas. READ MORE

By John Ortman7/5/2013 • 0 Comments

Participation in DC plans is at an all-time high and DC plan balances have regained pre-recession levels, according to Aon Hewitt’s “2013 Hot Topics in Retirement” report. However, Aon's analysis also shows employee savings rates remain flat, suggesting that more work is needed to continue to help workers achieve retirement security. READ MORE

By John Ortman7/5/2013 • 0 Comments

After a little more than five weeks' worth of voting — totaling more than 3,000 votes — here are the top 10 ideas in our online poll of ideas for sessions at next year’s NAPA 401(k) Summit: READ MORE

By John Ortman7/3/2013 • 0 Comments

An ASPPA webcast on the U.S. Supreme Court's decision overturning part of DOMA — and its impact on benefit plans — has been scheduled for Wednesday, July 17, from 2:00 p.m. to 3:40 ET. The speaker will be Ronald J. Triche, Esq., APM, Assistant General Counsel of ASPPA. Triche will discuss the case, its impact on employee benefits, and the many questions left unanswered by the Court. READ MORE

By John Ortman7/3/2013 • 0 Comments

Despite the fact that about two out of three Millennials expect to retire by age 65, nearly 70% of them have not taken any action to plan or save for retirement, according to a new nationwide survey conducted by GfK Research for TheStreet's MainStreet.com. And even with Social Security being viewed by many as an antiquated system with long-term sustainability issues, more than half of the Millennials surveyed (54%) are planning on it as a top source of retirement income. READ MORE

Fred Reish

Fred Reish

By Fred Reish7/24/2013 • 1 Comments

The Office of Management and Budget has posted that it received a proposed regulation from the Department of Labor. Unfortunately, it is not the much-anticipated proposed regulation on fiduciary advice. READ MORE

Andrew Remo

Andrew Remo

By Andrew Remo7/25/2013 • 0 Comments

On Tuesday, July 24, the Aspen Institute’s Initiative on Financial Security organized a briefing for congressional staff to discuss how reforming the tax code could affect the retirement security of Americans. READ MORE

By Andrew Remo7/23/2013 • 0 Comments

Congress is in the middle of a four-week, in-session work period before Members head out of town for the traditional August recess. Last week, the House of Representatives passed legislation to delay both the employer and the individual mandate under the Affordable Care Act for one year, as well as legislation reauthorizing federal education programs. READ MORE

By Andrew Remo7/17/2013 • 0 Comments

The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) held a hearing July 16 to examine issues related to multiple employer DB and DC plans, including legislation introduced by Committee Chairman Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) and Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS), a fellow committee member, that would ease funding rules imposed by the PPA on cooperatives and small employer charities that operate multiple employer DB plans. READ MORE

By Andrew Remo7/11/2013 • 2 Comments

Congress seems no closer to resolving the politically sensitive issue of student loan interest rates, as a proposal from Senate Democrats which included the so-called “stretch IRA” revenue raising provision was rejected July 10 by a 51-49 vote. (Sixty votes were needed to pass.) READ MORE

By Andrew Remo7/10/2013 • 2 Comments

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), the Ranking Member on the Senate Finance Committee, introduced legislation July 9 that would simplify and enhance the current private employer-based retirement plan system. The proposals in the bill would expand coverage, simplify the operation of private retirement plans — including reporting and disclosure rules — and restore jurisdiction over the fiduciary rules in the tax code to the Treasury Department. READ MORE

Andy Stonehouse

Andy Stonehouse

By Andy Stonehouse7/26/2013 • 0 Comments

Feeling a bit like you've got 404a-5 participant fee disclosure overload? You're not alone. But as the rules are indeed on the books, you're going to have to learn how to deal with them. READ MORE

By Andy Stonehouse7/24/2013 • 1 Comments

While the retirement world continues to wait for some final clarification on the Department of Labor’s ongoing attempts to establish the definition of fiduciary status under ERISA, a few recent cases demonstrate the tough time DoL will likely have in finalizing its controversial rules. READ MORE

Don Trone

Don Trone

By Don Trone7/10/2013 • 0 Comments

For more than 26 years I have been teaching retirement advisors that all things warm and wonderful can be linked back to a fiduciary standard. I no longer believe that; I think we may be at the start of what I’ll call the “Post-Fiduciary Movement.” READ MORE