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Single-premium pension buy-outs broke $6 billion in the third quarter of 2018, says a recent report, less than in the second quarter but still the second highest third quarter sales figure in the last 15 years. The LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute reports that in the third quarter of 2018, pension... READ MORE
The American Retirement Association (ARA) in a Dec. 11 letter to Acting IRS Commissioner David Horton has made suggestions regarding the Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System (EPCRS). Namely, the ARA has suggested that the IRS provide additional examples of “significant” and “insignificant”... READ MORE
The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) on Dec. 12 issued a final rule amending its regulation on allocation of assets in single-employer plans by substituting a new table for determining expected retirement ages for participants in pension plans undergoing distress or involuntary... READ MORE
After seeing their earlier proposal come under attack, House Republican leaders have revised their end-of-year tax and retirement savings legislative package, and carried forward key provisions from the Retirement Enhancement and Savings Act (RESA). Beyond that, the revised package seeks to... READ MORE
As the 401(k) commemorates its 40th anniversary, new research finds a record-setting pace for retirement plan savings. According to the 61stAnnual Survey of Profit Sharing and 401(k) Plans from the Plan Sponsor Council of America (PSCA), part of the American Retirement Association (ARA), employers... READ MORE
Dec. 31 is the deadline for most retirees who must make required minimum distributions (RMDs) from 401(k), 403(b) and 457(b) and other retirement plans and IRAs. The IRS has issued a reminder, which applies to many retirees born before July 1, 1948, regarding the looming deadline in IR-2018-248.... READ MORE
Managing participant data effectively is efficient, but it’s also more than that. Recent blog entries argue that it also provides a way to meet fiduciary responsibilities and address the problem of missing participants — if not obviate it in the first place. It’s not hard to get into that position... READ MORE
Will the 115th Congress act on a broad tax and retirement savings package before adjourning? It looks like we’ll have to wait a little longer to find out. Following the memorial events following the death of President George H.W. Bush, lawmakers approved a two-week funding extension on Dec. 6 to... READ MORE
As you probably know, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals threw out the Department of Labor’s (DOL) Fiduciary Rule. While the decision left no doubt, the consequences are not well understood. To grasp the full impact of the court’s decision, it’s important to distinguish between non-... READ MORE
The IRS has issued the required amendments (RA) list for qualified retirement plans for 2018. The IRS made the announcement — and said that there are no entries listing changes in qualification requirements on the 2018 RA List — in Notice 2018-91. Section 5 of Revenue Procedure 2016-37, 2016-29 I.R... READ MORE
Effective 401(k) plan design features like auto-enrollment and auto-escalation have been shown to increase participation, boost deferral rates and improve investment diversification, but they can also bring unintended results, according to a new paper. In their paper, “Best Intentions: The... READ MORE
October might have been a scary month for your 401(k) — but November was a month for giving thanks. According to estimates from the nonpartisan Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI), the average 401(k) account balance for younger (25-34), less tenured (1-4 years) workers jumped 3.2% in... READ MORE
Many employers are interested in offering financial wellness programs to their employees, but there appears to be limited consensus on the approach, according to new research from the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI). Last spring, EBRI began exploring employers’ interest in offering... READ MORE
Results from a new survey show that investors continue to have unrealistic expectations for investment returns, but their tolerance for risk is lower and few truly understand the ramifications of market volatility. Natixis Investment Managers’ survey of 750 individual investors in the U.S. found... READ MORE
The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) plans to seek the approval of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) of a form and instructions that will enable it to obtain information it needs to make coverage determinations. The PBGC made the announcement on Dec. 3. The proposed form and... READ MORE
The Auditing Standards Board of the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) has voted to issue a new auditing standard. It has taken this step to address auditor reporting on ERISA plan financial statements. The new auditing standard, “Forming an Opinion and Reporting on Financial Statements of... READ MORE
The parties in another proprietary fund suit have come to terms, both financially and with an agreement for “ongoing prospective relief.” Under the terms of the settlement, Waddell & Reed Financial, Inc. will cause its fiduciary insurance carrier (RLI Insurance Company) to pay $4.875 million... READ MORE
There are a variety of factors behind retirement plan participation levels and saving rates; among them is the belief that one simply cannot afford to set much aside, if any at all. A recent blog entry suggests that budgeting — as in, helping participants or potential participants do it — can be a... READ MORE
OregonSaves, the first of the state-run IRA programs for private sector workers, is getting ready to take things up another notch. Specifically, the contribution rates for OregonSaves participants will, beginning Jan. 1, automatically increase 1% on the first day of each year, until they reach 10%... READ MORE
A bipartisan agreement on addressing the problems facing multiemployer pensions has not yet been reached, but the co-chairs of the Joint Select Committee on the Solvency of Multiemployer Pension Plans are pledging that work will continue past Nov. 30. It had been anticipated that a measure would be... READ MORE

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