Current Events

September 2017 fiduciary rule update

September 27, 2017

In this update on the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule, we discuss in detail DOL’s proposed 18-month extension of the “full applicability date” for exemptions that were part of the fiduciary rule package and briefly review the substance of oral argument in the Fifth Circuit in litigation challenging the rule. Read More

Update on IRS 2018 Mortality Table Guidance

September 25, 2017

In this article, we review where we are in the regulatory process, certain concerns raised by industry groups about IRS’s proposal, and (briefly) the effect of the new tables/rules on plan sponsors. We close with a review of the proposal’s rules for the use of substitute tables under the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 (BBA 2015). Read More

August 2017 Pension Finance Update

August 30, 2017

Pension funded status slipped in August, due to flat stock markets and remorselessly lower long-term interest rates. Both model plans we track1 saw modest declines last month – traditional Plan A dropped more than 1% but is still up 1% for the year, while the more conservative Plan B lost less than 1% in August but also remains 1% ahead so far in 2017. Read More

Current outlook – August 2017

August 28, 2017

In this Current outlook we discuss: legislation introduced in Congress that would reduce Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation premiums and take premium decreases/increases off-budget; the re-classification of IRS’s mortality table update as “Economically Significant;” the wind-up of the myRA program (and its policy significance); and (very briefly) the effect of possible tax reform legislation on retirement savings tax incentives. Read More

Distributed ledger technology and retirement savings infrastructure – part 2

August 22, 2017

In a previous article, Distributed ledger technology and retirement savings infrastructure – part 1 – the basics, we set out to define distributed ledger technologies (DLT). In this article we discuss some of the practical effects on retirement plan administration that may result from the adoption of distributed ledger technologies (DLT) by the financial services industry as a whole and by retirement plan sponsors and service providers. We then consider the policy implications of some of these changes. We conclude with a brief discussion of some legal/ERISA issues that DLT may raise. Read More

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