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The Economics of Providing 401k Plans: Services, Fees, and Expenses, 2017

Abstract: Maintaining a 401k plan involves a variety of services, and the costs of these services are generally shared by the plan sponsor and the plan participants. This 32-page report, published in June, 2018, looks at the economics of providing 401k plans including services, fees, and expenses.

Source: Ici.org, June 2018

Retirement Plan Best Practices: Participant Education

Abstract: This 17-page white paper examines best practices for a plan sponsor in designing education and engagement programs to improve participants' financial wellness and long-term retirement outcomes. Whether plan sponsors are working alone or with an education provider, the paper offers guidance on how to build and implement a successful program that reaches their employees.

Source: Arnerichmassena.com, June 2018

Fiduciary Implications of Flexible Retirement Income Solutions

Abstract: As DC plans continue to evolve, better plans will likely move beyond the current menu of accumulation options and automation-related innovations to address retirement income challenges faced by their participants in a thoughtful and integrated manner. Moreover, careful fiduciaries will ensure that the processes used to evaluate retirement income solutions are defensible and well documented.

Source: Wagnerlawgroup.com, June 2018

Considering Customized Investment Options in a DC Plan

Abstract: As DC plans represent a growing share of workers' retirement nest eggs, plan sponsors and consultants may be considering customized investment options for their DC plan investment menus. This 12-page paper discusses the potential benefits and drawbacks of including nonstandard investment options, particularly white-label funds, in a 401k plan.

Source: Vanguard.com, June 2018

How Do DC Plan Sponsors View Retirement Risks and Objectives?

Abstract: A recent survey of DC plan sponsors and consultants finds that when selecting a target-date strategy or other QDIA, plan sponsors were most concerned about participants' longevity risk and their ability to achieve higher retirement account balances over the long term.

Source: Napa-net.org, June 2018

Lump Sums Are Most Common Payment Option for Participants in DC Plans

Abstract: As workers approach retirement, they might wonder how their retirement savings will be paid out. A lump sum was the most common payment option available to workers. A lump sum provides retiring workers the full amount of their retirement savings and earnings with no further benefits received from the plan.

Source: Bls.gov, June 2018

Retirement Income Gaining Interest Among Plan Sponsors and Participants

Abstract: Today, employees are responsible for investing their own retirement assets, and they are also tasked with making decisions about decumulation. A recent MetLife survey called "The Role of the Company" confirmed employees recognize these responsibilities, but they still want help from their employer, viewed as a trusted partner. Roberta Rafaloff, head of MetLife’s Institutional Income Annuities business, spoke with PLANSPONSOR about how employers can help guide employees in terms of structuring retirement income.

Source: Plansponsor.com, June 2018

Financial Wellness Programs That Follow Up Are the Most Effective

Abstract: Financial wellness programs that follow up with participants or that are offered continuously are the most effective, according to a new report issued by the Pension Research Council at The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

Source: Planadviser.com, June 2018

More 401k Savers Go All-In on TDFs

Abstract: The data are in, and they tell a powerful story about the state of retirement in America. The 17th edition of How America Saves delves into the retirement savings behavior of 4.6 million participants in defined contribution (DC) retirement plans for which Vanguard provides recordkeeping services. Our data-rich report examines trends in how participants accumulate, manage, and access retirement savings.

Source: Vanguard.com, June 2018

Cerulli Foresees 401ks Embracing Retirement Income

Abstract: With millions of Baby Boomers now retiring, Cerulli expects the next big development will be plans embracing retirement income. Cerulli says the first step retirement plan stakeholders can take is to encourage plan sponsors to work to keep retired participants in their plan, to "embrace a more holistic view toward their participants."

Source: Planadviser.com, June 2018

Defined Contribution Plan Trends that Plan Sponsors Need to Know

Abstract: Research from Deloitte and Callan observed defined contribution plan trends and priorities for 2018 as plan sponsors strive to create better long-term outcomes for participants. Plan sponsors heavily cited the already mentioned retirement readiness as a main concern in addition to continued effort to address fees and improve participant communication. Here are some industry trends that are reshaping how employers approach their DC plans now.

Source: Planpilot.com, June 2018

ERISA Tips: Participant Plan and Investment Fee Disclosures

Abstract: Title I of ERISA sets basic requirements for the disclosure of information; among those requirements are rules for disclosures concerning the plan and investment fees that are to be made to participants and beneficiaries with the authority to direct their own investments in individual account plans.

Source: Ntsa-net.org, June 2018

Self-Directed 401k Investors Favored Mutual Funds in First Quarter

Abstract: According to Charles Schwab's SDBA Indicators Report, a benchmark on retirement plan participant investment activity within self-directed brokerage accounts, plan participants invested the largest percentage of new assets into mutual funds in the first quarter of 2018, followed by exchange-traded funds, equities and fixed income.

Source: Aboutschwab.com, June 2018

Groups Call for New Social Contract for Retirement

Abstract: Nearly half of today's workers and retirees fear that future generations of retirees will be worse off than those currently in retirement, cited by 49% globally and 46% in the U.S, according to "The New Social Contract: A Blueprint for Retirement in the 21st Century." The report is based on a survey of 16,000 workers and retirees in 15 countries. Survey finds that to prevent future retirees from challenges, governments and employers will have to step up to the plate.

Source: Plansponsor.com, May 2018

What Explains the Widening Gap in Retirement Ages by Education?

Abstract: Over the last three decades, the average retirement age has increased by about three years, to 64.6 for men and 62.3 for women. But this trend is not uniform across socioeconomic groups. This 8-page paper examines several potential causes of the unequal increases in retirement ages.

Source: Bc.edu, May 2018

Millennials are Better Prepared for Retirement Than Their Parents

Abstract: "Best prepared for retirement." That's not a superlative one might expect to describe Millennials, but according to the J.D. Power 2018 Group Retirement Satisfaction StudySM, it's true. Millennials are most likely of all demographic groups to have set specific retirement goals and have the highest amount of savings -- relative to age -- in group retirement plans.

Source: Jdpower.com, May 2018

PSCA Study Shows Retirement Plan Participation Rates Rising

Abstract: The percentage of employees signing up and making contributions to their qualified retirement plan has risen almost ten percent since 2010 according to the PSCA's 60th Annual Survey of Profit Sharing and 401k Plans. PSCA found 84.9 percent of employees made contributions to their plan in 2016 compared to 76.9 percent in 2010.

Source: 401khelpcenter.com, May 2018

Choice Architecture and Participant Investment Decisions

Abstract: This 12-page paper studies index exposure at the participant level, particularly its sharp rise for the average participant in Vanguard-administered plans because of the expanded use of index target-date funds. The analysis is a case study of the dynamics of individual decision-making that influence the adoption of any investment strategy within a participant-directed plan.

Source: Vanguard.com, May 2018

Research Shows Gig Economy May Replace Retirement

Abstract: For many survey respondents, the gig economy is replacing how they plan to earn income in retirement: 16 percent plan on having gig economy jobs to supplement their retirement; 12 percent of side-hustlers will keep a side-gig job as their main source of income after retiring from their traditional career; and, one in five full-time giggers say they'll continue to pick up incremental work in the gig economy as their main source of income following "retirement."

Source: Betterment.com, May 2018

Defined Contribution Plan Participants' Activities, 2017

Abstract: This report updates results from ICI's survey of a cross section of recordkeeping firms representing a broad range of DC plans and covering more than 30 million employer-based DC retirement plan participant accounts as of December 2017. The broad scope of the recordkeeper survey provides valuable insights about recent withdrawal, contribution, asset allocation, and loan decisions of participants in these plans.

Source: Ici.org, May 2018

"Thirst for Liquidity" Hurting 401k Savings Rates

Abstract: Deferred gratification or immediate satisfaction? Americans appear to choose the latter. Not exactly news to anyone following the saving rates of the nation's consumers. Yet a new report from Hearts &Wallets finds a "thirst for liquidity is driving increases of certain account types as consumers weigh tradeoffs between tax-deferred investments versus readily accessible funds."

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, May 2018

The Top 25 401k Plans

Abstract: Listed here in descending order, Employee Benefit News, in partnership with business intelligence data analytics firm miEdge, presents the top 25 401k plans in the United States based on plan-year-end net assets as of April 9, 2018.

Source: Benefitnews.com, May 2018

Workers Willing to Sacrifice Pay for Better Retirement Benefits

Abstract: Most U.S. workers are willing to swap their pay for greater retirement benefits, but far fewer would trade off pay for better healthcare coverage, a Willis Towers Watson survey shows. The survey found that 66% of respondents would make higher monthly payments for more generous retirement benefits, and 61% would exchange more pay for a guaranteed retirement benefit.

Source: Hrdive.com, May 2018

Of Canadian Gen-Xers, 28% Have No Retirement Savings

Abstract: More than a quarter of generation Xers in Canada haven't saved anything for retirement, a new survey from Franklin Templeton has found. While the 28 per cent of Canadian gen-Xers who are in that position suggests a significant gap in retirement savings, the number compares favorably to the United States. In that country, 37 per cent of gen-Xers haven't started on retirement saving.

Source: Benefitscanada.com, May 2018

Human Interaction Increases Benefits Engagement

Abstract: A new survey conducted among HR and benefits managers on employee benefits engagement and utilization has found that despite the ongoing growth of technology, employees desire personalized, human interaction. This was among the findings of the Driving Benefits Engagement survey by Health Advocate.

Source: Blr.com, May 2018

Confidence in Retirement Planning Correlates With Higher Retirement Income

Abstract: Individuals who have an adviser are more likely to be on track to create adequate retirement income, by a wide margin, a study by Empower found.

Source: Planadviser.com, May 2018

Which 401k Plan Features Boost Retirement Readiness?

Abstract: New research suggests 401k plan sponsors may play an even bigger role in American workers' retirement outcomes than they realize. According to a study by Empower Retirement, the features included in plan designs heavily impact participants' chances of securing a successful retirement.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, May 2018

Seven Investment Trends in 401k Plans

Abstract: A number of forces continue to drive change in 401k investing, among them the broad adoption of index funds and litigation targeting 401k plans for allegedly excessive fees. Here's a breakdown of the prevalent trends by the numbers.

Source: Investmentnews.com (registration may be required), May 2018

Scoring the Progress of Retirement Savers

Abstract: New survey results indicate that American employers can heavily influence the retirement prospects of their workers by offering key features in the workplace savings plans they sponsor. In turn, employees can bolster their own chances at a secure retirement by actively pursuing financial advice and education for their own benefit.

Source: Empower-Retirement.com, May 2018

401k Lawsuits: What Are the Causes and Consequences?

Abstract: This 24-page paper looks at the broad complaints that motivate the litigation and how the threat of litigation may affect the retirement industry. The first section introduces the three main reasons why litigation is brought in the first place. The second section turns to the potential effects of this litigation on 401k plans.

Source: Bc.edu, May 2018

Trends in the Expenses and Fees of Funds

Abstract: Fund expenses cover portfolio management, fund administration and compliance, shareholder services, recordkeeping, certain kinds of distribution charges, and other operating costs. This ICI study found that, on average, fund expenses for long-term mutual funds have declined substantially for more than 20 years.

Source: Ici.org, April 2018

2018 RCS: Retiree Confidence in Critical Aspects of Retirement Security Declines

Abstract: This year's Retirement Confidence Survey finds only a third of retirees very confident in their ability to live comfortably throughout retirement. While this is comparable to last year, retiree confidence in having enough money to cover basic expenses and medical expenses has dropped: 80 percent say they are very/somewhat confident about covering basic expenses this year compared to 85 percent in 2017; and 70 percent say they are very/somewhat confident about covering medical expenses this year vs. 77 percent in 2017.

Source: Ebri.org, April 2018

How Is Income in Retirement Changing?

Abstract: The RCS shows how workers' expectations of the sources of income in retirement might differ from the sources of income for current retirees: 26 percent of retirees report receiving income from work, while 68 percent of workers expect working for pay to provide them income in retirement; 2-in-3 retirees report Social Security is a major source of income, while only about a third of workers believe Social Security will be a major source; and more than 4-in-10 retirees report income from a DB or pension plan is a major source of income, while only 32% of workers expect a DB plan to be a major source for them in retirement.

Source: Ebriorg.wordpress.com, April 2018

ESG and Retirement Plans: The Case for Greater Compatibility

Abstract: While considering Environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing strategies, it is an important part of plan fiduciary oversight to assess them thoughtfully and consistent with ERISA's fiduciary requirements. This paper's goal is to provide an assessment to help you understand the impact of ESG solutions and the potential benefits and risks for your retirement investment program now and going forward.

Source: Planpilot.com, April 2018

Defined Contribution Consulting Support and Trends Survey

Abstract: PIMCO asked the nation's top retirement consultants: How can defined contribution plan participants and sponsors achieve financial security over the long haul? Download the 24-page report here.

Source: Pimco.com, April 2018

Is Retirement Plan Participation Underreported?

Abstract: A study confirmed that the apparent underreporting of retirement plan participation in the US Census Bureau's Current Population Survey increased substantially following a recent revision to the household survey's questionnaire. The CPS participation rate dropped sharply beginning in 2014, the first data collected using the new questionnaire. In contrast, the tax data show that the retirement plan participation rate has held steady since 2008, according to ICI.

Source: Asppa.org, April 2018

Retirement Income to Last a Lifetime

Abstract: Many approaches may be needed to help future retirees secure lifetime incomes to provide them with the security and dignity of personally managing their retirement. Possible approaches consist of reevaluating federal retirement policies, emphasizing financial literacy and education, and refocusing retirement plan designs.

Source: Actuary.org, April 2018

Retirement's Future Could Rest With Digital Tools

Abstract: Wwhen a chatbot and text messages, as well as targeted e-mails, are combined with the principles of behavioral economics -- specifically, nudging people into certain actions -- the effects on retirement savings can be substantial.

Source: Voya.com, April 2018

Could "Tontines" Expand the Market for Longevity Insurance?

Abstract: Tontine is a fancy word for betting on how long you'll live, in a good way. Here's the concept in a nutshell: many people pool their money in return for guaranteed regular payouts for life, similar to an annuity. This 6-page paper takes a close look at an idea that is tossed around among finance experts: modifying tontines to use them as a source of retirement income.

Source: Bc.edu, April 2018

Who Participates in Retirement Plans

Abstract: Increasing the share of workers who participate in retirement plans has been a primary focus of retirement policy. As the retirement industry and policymakers try to increase participation, it is important to understand which workers currently participate in employer-sponsored retirement plans and why certain employers offer, and certain employees desire, compensation in the form of retirement benefits. This 32-page report uses newly available 2014 data to analyze participation in employer-sponsored retirement plans.

Source: Ici.org, April 2018

Boomer Expectations for Retirement - 2018 Study

Abstract: Baby boomers -- even the youngest of whom are just a decade or so away from retirement age -- are in large measure unprepared for retirement, having failed both to plan adequately and save enough, according to this 26-page study released by the Insured Retirement Institute.

Source: Myirionline.org, April 2018

U.S. Census Wrong on 401K Coverage

Abstract: Most American workers participate in employer-sponsored retirement plans, but you wouldn't know it from recent Census numbers. A recent ICI study confirmed that the underreporting of retirement plan participation in the U.S. Census Bureau's Current Population Survey increased substantially following a recent revision to the household survey's questionnaire.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, April 2018

How Do Gender and Generation Impact Retirement Saving Behavior?

Abstract: April is Financial Literacy Month, so what better time to gauge Americans' prowess in saving money? The degree to which adults have mastered the art of padding personal savings accounts or stashing away money in a 401k or other retirement savings vehicle varies by age and sex.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, April 2018

Individual Account Retirement Plans the Dominant Source of Retirement Income

Abstract: EBRI also found not only do individual account assets make up a large portion of families' financial assets, but those with individual account assets also have substantially higher levels of net worth than those families without them.

Source: Planadviser.com, April 2018

An Analysis of Retirement Models to Improve Portability and Coverage

Abstract: To better understand the portability and coverage challenges of the 401k system and to assess possible strategies to improve it, this report presents a three-part analysis. The objective of the report is to assess and present a wide range of available options by examining and summarizing existing proposals and, where relevant, examples from other countries.

Source: Bc.edu, April 2018

Competing Financial Needs Disrupt 401k Saving for Many Americans

Abstract: It's not that U.S. workers don't want to save for retirement. In fact, more Americans than ever before say retirement security is important. However, many are experiencing financial stress, which in turn is inhibiting saving.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, March 2018

Dispelling Myths: Retirement Security Is a Priority for All Generations

Abstract: It's no secret that many people aren't saving enough for retirement. The question for most is: how to afford it? At the same time plan generosity has declined, other financial pressures have gone up. The result is a growing number of employees -- due to low wage growth and mounting debts -- literally live paycheck to paycheck.

Source: Willis.com, March 2018

401k Plan Benchmark Report Released

Abstract: Judy Diamond Associates has published the results of the third annual 401k Plan Benchmark Report. The in-depth analysis and report examine approximately 500,000 active 401k plans.

Source: Prnewswire.com, March 2018

Market Volatility Hasn't Tempered Historically High DC Plan Optimism

Abstract: The Wells Fargo/Gallup Investor and Retirement Optimism Index remains at a 17-year high, despite a clear uptick in volatility, with the index at +139 in the first quarter; the firm's head of retirement dissects the findings here.

Source: Planadviser.com, March 2018

Study Finds Fewer GenXers Have Retirement Savings

Abstract: With only ten years until the eldest of the cohort turn 65, the majority GenXers believe their savings will cover their basic expenses and allow for leisure and travel in retirement. However, this confidence is misguided as forty percent of GenXers have no retirement savings, an increase of 5 percent from the previous study.

Source: Myirionline.org, March 2018

Debt Levels for Households Nearing Retirement Decreasing, But Still High Compared to Past Generations

Abstract: Evidence paints a mixed picture of trends relating to debt levels of families with a "near elderly" head, those ages 55 to 64. By many measures, the debt burden has improved for this demographic group since the Great Recession. At the same time, in many ways, this family cohort shows higher levels of indebtedness than families with older heads.

Source: Ebri.org, March 2018

Which 401k Plan Fees Can Be Paid Out of Plan Assets?

Abstract: Are we allowed to pay 401k plan-related expenses out of the plan assets? This is another one of those questions with a short answer and a longer answer. The short answer is yes, it is perfectly allowable for some 401k plan expenses to be paid out of plan assets, but the flip side of that is that there are some expenses that are not allowed to be paid from the plan.

Source: Dwc401k.com, March 2018

Evaluating the Impact of a Retirement Managed Account

Abstract: Many DC plans today offer a managed account option. Yet there is no standard method for valuing these accounts that considers the full range of potential product features and their financial impact. This 16-page paper presents a method for valuing managed accounts and also delineates the menu of features that may be offered through a managed account investment option in a DC plan.

Source: Empower-Retirement.com, March 2018

The Mobile Workforce's Missing Participant Problem

Abstract: This 13-page survey on stale address records in employer-sponsored plans was conducted in collaboration with Retirement Clearinghouse. The report is the first of its kind to survey terminated participants themselves about the status of their accounts left behind in former-employer plans.

Source: Rch1.com, March 2018

PSCA Study Finds Roth Usage Doubled in Past Decade

Abstract: Roth availability doubled in the last decade according to the Plan Sponsor Council of America's 60th Annual Survey of Profit Sharing and 401k Plans. PSCA, part of the American Retirement Association, found Roth was offered in 63.1 percent of plans in 2016 compared to 30.3 percent in 2007.

Source: 401khelpcenter.com, March 2018

Retirement Saving Focus Especially Needed for Latino Women

Abstract: Researchers at the University of Notre Dame, in a study funded by the National Endowment for Financial Education say Latinas -- Hispanic women -- have a huge appetite for financial education and a strong desire to save, and their savings could provide a critical safety net to America's largest minority group.

Source: Plansponsor.com, March 2018

DC Pulse Survey Highlights Sponsor Decumulation Challenge

Abstract: BlackRock has released the results of its third Defined Contribution Pulse Survey, compiling the opinions of some 200 large DC plan sponsors and about 1,000 plan participants. More plan sponsors this year than last have voiced a concern that their workers may have to delay retirement; this is the case despite the fact that plan participants are broadly feeling much more optimistic.

Source: Plansponsor.com, March 2018

Millennials Already Falling Behind in Retirement Savings

Abstract: A new report from the National Institute on Retirement Security examines the challenges facing Millennials and where this generation currently stands in preparing for retirement. As a generation, they have faced a number of financial and economic obstacles. Compared to previous generations at this point in their lives, they are less likely to own a home, have earned less, and accumulated less wealth.

Source: Protectpensions.org, March 2018

Conflicting Views on Americans' Retirement Prospects: Workers Confident, Employers Concerned

Abstract: Strong market performance has helped fuel increasing optimism among American workers about their retirement prospects, but many employers don't share their upbeat view, according to the latest DC Pulse Survey from BlackRock.

Source: Businesswire.com, March 2018

Americans Saving Nearly 8% for Retirement

Abstract: In a survey of 1,000 adults, PenFed Credit Union learned that Americans, on average, are saving 7.6% of their salaries for retirement. This increases to 8.9% for men and decreases to 6.4% for women.

Source: Plansponsor.com, March 2018

Defined Contribution Plans Have Come a Long Way

Abstract: The changes plan sponsors have made such as offering Target-Date Fund, automatic enrollment and making Target-Date Fund the main default option have reduced the net return differential between DB and DC plans. DC plans have become better retirement savings vehicles than we thought they would be just a decade ago.

Source: Cembenchmarking.com, March 2018

Retirement Offerings in the Fortune 500: A Retrospective

Abstract: The last two decades have witnessed a sweeping shift in retirement offerings from large employers. This study takes a historical look at the primary retirement plans offered by current Fortune 500 companies between 1998 and 2017, thus showing how their retirement programs have evolved over the last 20 years.

Source: Towerswatson.com, February 2018

Two-Thirds of Millennials Have Saved Absolutely Nothing for Retirement

Abstract: Most U.S. millennials aren't saving for retirement, and those who are saving (only 5%) are falling short of the mark, according to a new report from the National Institute on Retirement Security. The study found that 66.2% of employed millennials have nothing saved for retirement, and only 34.3% of them participate in their employer's retirement plan.

Source: Hrdive.com, February 2018

Top 30 401k Plans of 2016 Report

Abstract: BrightScope, a Strategic Insight company, is pleased to announce the Top 30 401k Plans of 2016 report. BrightScope's Top 30 list is comprised of large 401k plans with high overall quality, as measured by the BrightScope Rating.

Source: Brightscope.com, February 2018

Shake Up Financial Education, Paper Says

Abstract: Poor savings rates, high debt levels, and the frequent incidence of living paycheck-to-paycheck are among the ingredients in the recipe for financial stress. Financial education can be an antidote, but not in the traditional ways it is provided suggests a recent study.

Source: Asppa.org, February 2018

Retirement Plan Best Practices: Plan Monitoring

Abstract: Monitoring your investment menu managers, your plan providers, and plan fees is an important part of your overall fiduciary responsibility. This white paper looks at best practices and the standards should you be following in your monitoring practices. Throughout the paper, you'll find checklists that may be helpful in building and maintaining your plan monitoring processes.

Source: Arnerichmassena.com, February 2018

Less Than Half of Workers Contribute to There 401k

Abstract: Across the board, Americans could be doing better when it comes to saving for retirement. Much better, in fact. According to a study from Edward Jones, only 49 percent of U.S. workers are actively participating in employer-sponsored 401k plans. Just 37 percent are contributing to an individual retirement account.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, February 2018

More Employers Are Upgrading Their DC Plans

Abstract: Employers are upgrading their defined contribution plans according to a Willis Towers Watson. WTW found that more employers are adding automatic enrollment and Roth plan features to their 401k plans, increasing their contributions, reducing the number of investment choices and being more transparent about recordkeeping fees.

Source: Hrdive.com, February 2018

Tax-Reform Changes Lead Some Employers to Raise 401k Matches

Abstract: A handful of large U.S. corporations announced they are raising the employer match for their 401k retirement plans or are making other changes in their benefit plans in the first month after a tax reform law was signed by President Trump. And nearly half of companies surveyed said they are considering taking such an action this year or next.

Source: Blr.com, February 2018

Employees Cash Out 401ks in Record Numbers

Abstract: The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that today's mobile workforce is changing jobs nearly a dozen times. For 35- to 44-year-olds, a little over a third take jobs that last less than a year. It doesn't allow for a lot of time to sock away money in a 401k account and as a result, many workers are cashing out what little they have.

Source: Workforce.com, February 2018

Retirement Planning More a Focus for Those Participating in Retirement Plans

Abstract: An analysis from Pew Charitable Trusts of data from a nationally representative internet survey of private-sector workers shows a correlation between access to and participation in workplace-based retirement savings programs and more planning and saving.

Source: Planadviser.com, February 2018

DC Plans in the US and the UK: Lessons From Across the Pond

Abstract: This 36-page paper addresses the differences between defined contribution plans in the US and the UK and the lessons that can be learned from these programs. The paper is a high-level overview of the legal, regulatory and policy framework governing DC plans in both jurisdictions. It provides an analysis of the shift away from defined benefit (DB) plans in the US and the UK, to the widespread use of DC plans by both countries as the primary way of providing workplace pensions.

Source: Eversheds-Sutherland.com, February 2018

How Does Household Debt Affect Retirement?

Abstract: While there is extensive media coverage regarding Americans' lack of retirement savings, a much less discussed topic is the growing amount of debt that Americans carry into retirement. Larger mortgages, higher student loans and a greater overall comfort with debt than displayed by earlier generations has increased the average debt for households approaching retirement by nearly 160%.

Source: Thecapitalideas.com, February 2018

PSCA Finds Faster Start for Auto Enroll Programs

Abstract: While the most common default deferral remains 3% of pay (used by 36.4% of plans), more than half of those with automatic enrollment now have a default deferral rate higher than 3%, according to a new survey.

Source: Asppa.org, February 2018

Fidelity Finds Increase in Retirement Plan Millionaires

Abstract: The number of 401k savers with at least $1 million in their 401k increased to 150,000 at the end of 2017, up from 93,000 a year ago. The number of investors with $1 million in their IRA account rose to 152,000, an increase from 109,000 at the end of 2016.

Source: Plansponsor.com, February 2018

Many Workers Unaware of Tax Credit for Retirement Savers

Abstract: Nearly two in three American workers do not know about the Tax Credit for Retirement Savers, the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies learned in a survey.

Source: Planadviser.com, February 2018

Retirement Income, Managed Accounts and "Shadow Fiduciaries"

Abstract: New Cerulli research shows the most common reason for which 401k plan sponsors offer participants a managed account service is that it can be positioned as a retirement income solution; also considered is the emergence of so-called "shadow fiduciaries."

Source: Planadviser.com, February 2018

Millennial Benefit Trends Report

Abstract: This report provides a look at exactly how millennial job seekers prioritize the variety of employee benefits that may be offered, as well as what the best practices are for this critical stage of the job hunt. The 14-page report aims to provide a resource for employers who want to better understand what this generation wants -- the millennial mindset -- when looking for a job.

Source: Pentegra.com, February 2018

ADP Test Basics 2017

Abstract: The tax code governing 401k plans was written to prevent qualified retirement plans from overly favoring Highly Compensated Employees. The ADP test uses mathematical equations to compare the participation and contribution rates of the HCEs to the NHCEs to determine whether the plan is discriminating in favor of the HCEs. This article reviews the test and how it works.

Source: Legacyrsllc.com, February 2018

American Views on Defined Contribution Plan Saving

Abstract: The survey polled respondents about their views on defined contribution (DC) retirement account saving and their confidence in 401k and other DC plan accounts. Survey responses indicated that households value the discipline and investment opportunity that 401k plans represent and that households were largely opposed to changing the tax preferences or investment control in those accounts. Report is 32 pages.

Source: Ici.org, February 2018

Americans on Target to Have 80% of the Income They Will Need in Retirement

Abstract: Americans' retirement score has reached a high of 80, meaning that they will have 80% of the income they will need in retirement, according to a survey of 3,100 people by Fidelity Investments. This is a marked improvement from 2005, when the score was 62. However, Fidelity ranks the score of 80 as fair, meaning that there is still a good amount of work that needs to be done.

Source: Planadviser.com, January 2018

Three Reasons Plan Sponsors are Considering CITs - or Should Be

Abstract: CITs are often misunderstood, and many sponsors don't know where to begin when comparing mutual funds and CITs. Admittedly, it's a technical topic, but it's a topic that is increasingly important.

Source: Manning-Napier.com, January 2018

Lower Fees May Not Mean Added Retirement Savings

Abstract: Advisors are adopting software and investment platforms geared to help them find the cheapest, low-fee retirement products for their clients, but that might not necessarily equate to added savings in retirement, new research says.

Source: Financial-Planning.com, January 2018

Millennial Benefit Trends Report

Abstract: Research found that the types of benefits that millennials are seeking include the standard insurance coverage, retirement plans, and vacation policies. However, this generation's interests also extend well beyond those cornerstone concerns, both when they are identifying companies that they would like to work for, and when weighing an offer of employment.

Source: Pentegra.com, January 2018

2017 Retirement Plan Mobile Enhancements

Abstract: Over the course of 2017, multiple Retirement Plan Monitor coverage group firms launched new mobile apps and revamped existing apps, integrating more account data, introducing transaction capabilities and harnessing new mobile technologies to add app features. These are all welcomed enhancements as Americans continue to increase their already-high level of dependency on mobile devices for internet access.

Source: Corporateinsight.com, January 2018

Three-Quarters of Americans Are in the Dark When it Comes to 401k Fees

Abstract: A new TD Ameritrade survey of 1,000 investors shows that 96 percent of people know how much they pay each month for streaming media services like Netflix, Hulu and Spotify and yet just 27 percent know how much they're paying in fees on their 401k accounts.

Source: Businesswire.com, January 2018

Five of the Biggest 401k Changes of This Decade

Abstract: Over the past few years, the 401k industry has seen several sweeping changes take place, each of which has altered the core dynamics of how employees' retirement plans are managed. New government regulations have modified how the industry is monitored for betterment of employees. Here are five of the biggest changes that have affected the responsibility, litigation strategies, fees and overall practices for providers.

Source: Forbes.com, January 2018

Optimizing Retirement Income by Integrating Retirement Plans, IRAs, and Home Equity

Abstract: In this 144-page report, the authors present a framework of analyses and methods that financial advisers, financial institutions, plan sponsors, and retirees can use to compare and assess strategies for developing lifetime retirement income.

Source: Stanford.edu, January 2018

How to "Pensionize" Any IRA or 401k Plan

Abstract: American workers face three challenges in a DC world: Inadequate savings, Leakage, and Generating retirement income. This 19-page white paper focuses on solutions to the third challenge while acknowledging the importance of the first two.

Source: Stanford.edu, January 2018

2018 Defined Contribution Trends

Abstract: Callan conducted our 11th annual Defined Contribution Trends Survey in the fall of 2017. The survey incorporates responses from 152 plan sponsors, including both Callan clients and other organizations. This 57-page report highlights key themes and findings from 2017 and expectations for 2018.

Source: Callan.com, January 2018

Lawsuits Push 401k Plan Sponsors to Cut Fees

Abstract: Employers are moving to reduce their 401k plan costs in greater numbers, largely in an attempt to avoid the fate of peers who've been sued for allegedly excessive fees in their defined-contribution plans, new research suggests.

Source: Investmentnews.com (registration may be required), January 2018

Employer Contributions to 401ks Show Steady Increase

Abstract: Ascensus data shows the number of employers funding employer contributions increased from 53% in 2013 to 81% in 2016, and data gathered from Strategic Insight finds the amount of employers contributions have increased from $108.1 billion in 2010 to $139.2 billion in 2016.

Source: Planadviser.com, January 2018

Retirement and Financial Wellbeing

Abstract: This paper looks at the relationship between retirement security and financial wellbeing, because, without an appropriate degree of financial wellbeing, retirement solutions like automatic enrollment may be ineffective.

Source: Ebri.org, January 2018

Retirement Readiness -- How Do We Compare?

Abstract: This article compares the retirement system of Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The objective is to discover different areas where each country excelled and from which the other two could learn.

Source: Bpsm.com, January 2018

Major Problem Reported With 401k Auto Enrollment

Abstract: The benefits of automatic enrollment in 401ks are all but a given, and a major reason Richard Thaler, a behavioral economist at the University of Chicago, won last year's Nobel Prize in economics. But now new research has arrived that could wreck it all.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, January 2018

2017 Closes With a Bang for Average 401k Balances

Abstract: An analysis by the nonpartisan Employee Benefit Research Institute found that the average account balance for younger (25-34), less tenured (1-4 years) workers gained 43% in 2017. What about older workers? Well, the average 401k account balance of those aged 55-64 with more than 20 years of tenure ended the year nearly 20% (19.5%) higher than they began the year.

Source: Asppa.org, January 2018

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