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Hosting an industry conference? Ask us about including it in this ticker? Trending Topics for ERISA Plan Sponsors: Week Ending 4/28/17 Trending Topics for ERISA Plan Sponsors: Week Ending 4/28/17
May 01
00:05 2017

Welcome to Trending Topics. Each Monday, we’ll give you a quick synopsis of the major news events and trends impacting ERISA plan sponsors, 401k fiduciaries and those in the business of supporting these fine folks. If you smile when you read these entertaining snippets, well, that’s the idea. If you think we’re missing something important, then please let us know. But, note this well, we avoid press releases masquerading as news stories (even though they might be reported by journalists) as well as mass media pabulum that merely mouths investment myths and mistakes. “When everybody’s a fiduciary…  no one is.”

FiduciaryNews Lead Story:
Retirement Savers’ Most Taxing Misconceptions,” (, April 25, 2017) Comprehending the tax code is not an activity for the faint of heart and most retirement savers would faint if they saw the actual codebook. The problem with current tax code is that it may not be the same in the future. This realization can have profound impact on the retirement savings strategy one undertakes.

Compliance – Tax Reform Consumes All the Oxygen:

Fiduciary – A New DOL Secretary:

Fees – Bogle Says ‘Do Nothing’:

Investments – Index Funds Peaked?:
All of the sudden, index funds are getting hammered in the press. What’s up with that?
Index Funds Are Finally Sexy, and That’s a Shame,” (Wealth Management, April 24, 2017) Wow. An index fund fan figures out there’s a problem with index funds. Special bonus: John Bogle agrees. Read to find out.
Can You Get True Asset Allocation in a Single Fund?” (US News, April 24, 2017) Here’s another advocate of the “one-portfolio” solution, though it doesn’t appear to be on the face of it.
Advisors Worry About Risk in Rising Passive Inflows,” (ThinkAdvisor, April 24, 2017) It’s called “concentration” risk. It’s like putting all your eggs in one basket. We already knew this, but those chasing the low fees of index funds apparently don’t.
Michael Lewis: A Warning for Index Investors From the Oakland A’s,” (ThinkAdvisor, April 28, 2017) It’s all about looking for undervalued opportunities. Can’t do that with an index fund.

Major Plan Sponsor Moves and News:
What are other plan sponsors and fiduciaries doing with their plans? And how are participants responding? The latest in legal proceedings involving plan sponsors and fiduciaries.
Why Retirement Savings Need to Be ‘Recycled’,” (The 401(k) Specialist, April 24, 2017)
Is your 401k plan really ‘all set’?” (BenefitsPRO, April 25, 2017)

Trends and Truths for Retirement Savers:
If you’re a retirement plan fiduciary – whether a plan sponsor or a financial professional, don’t you think it’s a good idea to keep up on the topics retirement savers are most interested in? That’s what the media tries to do. Here’s what they think is on the mind of the people saving for retirement.
Five things that 20-somethings should know about saving for retirement,” (The Washington Post, April 21, 2017)
Retirement Plan: Increase Savings With Low Market Returns,” (Money, April 21, 2017)
Media Makes Mess of 401k Participant Behavior,” (The 401(k) Specialist, April 24, 2017)
How to Know If You’re Underfunded in Your Retirement Account,” (US News, April 25, 2017)
What Is The Appropriate Planning Age For Retirees?” (Forbes, April 25, 2017)
Surprise — you still need to pay taxes when you retire,” (BenefitsPRO, April 26, 2017)
The best way to get guaranteed income in retirement,” (CNN, April 26, 2017)
Warning To Baby Boomers: Get Creative Or Get Depressed,” (Forbes, April 26, 2017)

Wisdom from Some of Our Favorite Blogs:
Behavior Gap: Start By Tracking Your Spending |
Pension Risk Matters: Investment Fraud and the Role of Trust |
Nerd’s Eye View: Buying Happiness & Well-Being With Cash-On-Hand Reserves |
Fred Reish: Interesting Angles on the DOL’s Fiduciary Rule #44 |
ERISA Lawyer Blog: DOL Discusses The Selection Of A Default Investment For A Participant-Directed Account Plan |
The Rosenbaum Law Firm P.C. Blog: Revenue sharing costs money |
The Rosenbaum Law Firm P.C. Blog: IRS takes a look at Cash Balance Formulas for Funny Business |
The Rosenbaum Law Firm P.C. Blog: Why you have bad funds in 401k plans |
Nerd’s Eye View: What It Takes For Financial Advisors To Specialize In Retirees |
ERISA Lawyer Blog: IRS Provides Guidance On Maximum Loan Amounts |
Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Blog: Sixth Circuit Dismisses ERISA Stock Drop Action Against Cliffs Natural Resources |
Behavior Gap: The Roadblocks Stopping You From Actually Doing |
Boston ERISA Law Blog: Uber, Behavioral Economics, Choice Architecture and Trial Work |

Hot Tips from Popular Web Resources:
NAPA Net: Get Your Pitchforks Ready |
NAPA Net: Passive Shift Leaves Mark on TDFs |
NAPA Net: Oregon Moves Ahead With State-Run IRA Program |
The Motley Fool: 5 Benefits of Delaying Retirement |
Kiplinger: 5 Considerations to Help You Retire Wealthy |
Morningstar: Pulling Money From Your Roth IRA? Read This First |
NAPA Net: Advisory Firm Dismissed From Excessive Fee Lawsuit |
NAPA Net: 5 Things You May Not Know About Roth 401ks |
Kiplinger: Roth IRAs: A Great Tool for Tax-Efficient Investors |
Kiplinger: What Should 401k Plan Sponsors Do About Retirees? |
Kiplinger: 7 Reasons to Hire a Retirement Income Specialist |
Kiplinger: Taking RMDs From a SEP IRA |
Kiplinger: Using Home Wealth as Emergency Fund |
NAPA Net: Large Employers Get, Support Financial Wellness |
NAPA Net: Tax Reform and the Role of the Advisor |
NAPA Net: A Wow-Worthy Women Advisors’ Event |
NAPA Net: IRS Provides Clarity on Auditing Maximum Loan Amount |
Kiplinger: 5 Must-Do’s to Start with for Retirement Success |
The Motley Fool: 3 Smart Roth IRA Moves You Can Make Right Now |
Kiplinger: What Should 401k Plan Sponsors Do About Retirees? |
NAPA Net: Are Retirement Savings Safe From Tax Reform? |
NAPA Net: What New Disclosure is Required During the Transition Period? |
NAPA Net: EBSA’s Tim Hauser Talks Fiduciary Rule 3.0 |
The Motley Fool: What Can I Convert or Roll Over to a Roth IRA? |
NAPA Net: Smarter Start Boosts Savings Rates |
NAPA Net: We (Finally) Have a Secretary of Labor |
NAPA Net: Plan Sponsors Like, Want to Expand HSAs |

Miss anything? Feel free to add a comment below.

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Christopher Carosa, CTFA

Christopher Carosa, CTFA

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