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What do you think of our site upgrade? Trending Topics for ERISA Plan Sponsors: Week Ending 10/19/18 Trending Topics for ERISA Plan Sponsors: Week Ending 10/19/18
October 22
00:04 2018

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:
Exclusive Interview: Chuck Underwood Explains Why the Generations View Money Differently,” (, October 16, 2018) If we understand thoroughly what happened to each generation during its unique formative years, we can then make sense of the unique and powerful core values that guide that generation’s unique decision-making, including the decisions about their money.

Compliance – More Silliness:
Is there something in the pre-Halloween air that brings out spooky thinking? And while some are busy with their incantations, the cauldron of real-life reveals more than they’re willing to see.
How Sen. Warren’s Silly Self-Interest Affects 401k Saving,” (401K Specialist, October 11, 2018) OK, this opinion piece is really not about her, but she has been the click-bait of late. Still, an interesting opinion piece.
2 Sears pension plans might not survive bankruptcy proceedings,” (BenefitsPRO, October 15, 2018) Yeah, like we didn’t see this coming.
Workplace Retirement Coverage Drops And The System Continues To Fail,” (Forbes, October 16, 2018) A glass half-empty article from one of the usual suspects.

Fiduciary – The Rule Shall Rise Again:
Is this a real Phoenix? Or is it merely a false hope?
Why the SEC Will Never Enact a Meaningful Fiduciary Standard,” (401K Specialist, October 11, 2018) If you’d like to start your day off with a nice conspiracy piece, this one’s for you.
States are Taking up the Fiduciary Banner,” (Wealth Management, October 15, 2018) Is this good or will we end up with the same debacle we’re in with state-based health insurance regulations?
DOL Fiduciary Redux Is a ‘Sleeping Giant’: Groom’s Saxon,” (ThinkAdvisor, October 17, 2018) Yeah, but not until the SEC moves on Regulation Best Interest, whenever that happens…

Fees – Captain Obvious:
Sure, but do they really know what they’re getting?
Investors Want Greater Fee And Conflict Disclosure, CFA Institute Reports,” (Financial Advisor, October 18, 2018) This has become a problem for advisers because few advisers actually buy and sell stocks and bond. Instead, they manage portfolios of investment products (including mutual funds), which results in the opportunity for fee conflicts to exist.

Investments – Deer in the Headlights:
Speaking of Halloween, have the markets spooked investors?

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.
10 ways you can help employees prepare for retirement,” (BenefitsPRO, October 10, 2018)
Watch Out for Self-Serving Information on Retirement Plans,” (ThinkAdvisor, October 15, 2018)
9 ways to help 401k participants save more,” (BenefitsPRO, October 15, 2018)
Fred Reish: Court Rules in 401k Fiduciary’s Favor,” (401K Specialist, October 16, 2018)
Employees Report Blows to Retirement Savings and Financial Wellness Due to Health Costs,” (PLANADVISER, October 16, 2018)
Half of Millennial Business Owners Work With a Retirement Adviser,” (PLANADVISER, October 16, 2018)
401k co-creator: Next financial crisis may be worse,” (Employee Benefit News, October 17, 2018)
The Keys to an Effective 401k Plan Design, According to Wells Fargo,” (ThinkAdvisor, October 17, 2018)
Cash balance plans: How they’ve changed, how they work,” (BenefitsPRO, October 17, 2018)
Putnam Proprietary Fund Suit Revived on Appeal,” (PLANADVISER, October 17, 2018)
403(b) plan designs incorporating more best practices,” (BenefitsPRO, October 17, 2019)
Employers should provide this 401k match,” (Employee Benefit News, October 19, 2018)

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.
This Scares Americans More Than Retiring…,” (401K Specialist, October 11, 2018)
Bigger Social Security checks in 2019 may not be big enough: AARP,” (Fox Business, October 11, 2018)
Self-driving cars could change the way you get around in retirement,” (CNBC, October 11, 2018)
A ‘Staggering’ Number of Workers Will Fall Short in Retirement Savings,” (401K Specialist, October 11, 2018)
Yes, Blue-Collar Workers Could Be Harmed By A Higher Retirement Age. What Next?” (Forbes, October 11, 2018)
AARP Launches Social Security Resource Center,” (PLANADVISER, October 13, 2018)
How to save for retirement with student loans,” (CNBC, October 13, 2018)
Gray Divorces and Tax Changes Complicate Retirement,” (US News, October 15, 2018)
Ease your kids’ tax burden without breaking the law,” (Yahoo Finance, October 15, 2018)
5 big pitfalls of retirement, and how to fix them,” (MarketWatch, October 16, 2018)
The Roth IRA Upside of the Market Downturn,” (Wealth Management, October 16, 2018)
State Street Claims It Has Formula for Retirement Happiness,” (PLANADVISER, October 16, 2018)
Two ways to defray this retirement risk: Choose what’s right for you,” (CNBC, October 16, 2018)
An easier and cheaper way for retirees to tap home equity,” (MarketWatch, October 16, 2018)
The Complications Of Tax Reform On Retirement Savings,” (Financial Advisor, October 17, 2018)
Why so many want to punt Gen X – Carosa,” (BenefitsPRO, October 17, 2018)
Retirement: How to avoid 401k, IRA tax mistakes at end of 2018,” (USA Today, October 17, 2018)
Why it’s crucial to plan for your RMDs,” (MarketWatch, October 17, 2018)
An enjoyable mini retirement requires serious planning,” (CNBC, October 18, 2018)
Video: Retirees Make One Big Investing Mistake – Not Planning!” (TheStreet, October 18, 2018)
Worry over retirement savings efforts could cause depression, affect health, work,” (BenefitsPRO, October 18, 2018)
Edelman: Advisors Must Adapt To How Longevity, Technology Change Clients’ Goals,” (Financial Advisor, October 19, 2018)

Wisdom from Some of Our Favorite Blogs:
Ary Rosenbaum: Plan Sponsors Need To Know The “Hat” They Wear As Retirement Plan Fiduciaries |
The Retirement Plan Blog: When your SIMPLE-IRA no longer fits, maybe it’s time for a 401(k) plan…and November 2 is almost here |
Squared Away Blog: Millennials Give Saving a Low Priority |
The Rosenbaum Law Firm P.C. Blog: Fidelity sued again over their 401k plan |
The Rosenbaum Law Firm P.C. Blog: There has to be a better way than 10/15 |
Fred Reish: Best Interest and Best Practices #6 |
Squared Away Blog: How Retirees Can Negotiate Drug Prices |
The Rosenbaum Law Firm P.C. Blog: You need a tough love provider |
The Rosenbaum Law Firm P.C. Blog: Compensation is such a huge issue in 401k plans |
401k Plan Blog: How do you set up a 401k for small businesses? |
Ary Rosenbaum: Great 401k Plan Features That Can Be A Hit Or A Miss |

Hot Tips from Popular Web Resources:
NAPA Net: Fidelity Latest Financial Firm to Face Fiduciary Challenge |
NAPA Net: Compared to a Year Ago… |
NAPA Net: Addressing the $2 Trillion 401k Loan Leakage Problem |
NAPA Net: Two-thirds of Workers Projected to Fall Short of Retiring Comfortably |
The Motley Fool: Beware: Social Security Can Make Your Taxes Soar |
Kiplinger: Medicare Premiums, Deductibles 2019 Part B Part A |
NAPA Net: Financial Wellness of Long-term HSA Investors Shows Promise |
NAPA Net: Multiplication ‘Fables’ |
NAPA Net: IRS Grants Relief to Florida Victims of Hurricane Michael |
The Motley Fool: 3 Reasons 62-Year-Olds Should Take Social Security Now |
Kiplinger: Social Security Truth or Consequences |
NAPA Net: Case of the Week: ‘Like Plans’ for Lump Sums |
NAPA Net: Putnam Plaintiffs Get 2nd Shot at Fiduciary Breach Suit |
NAPA Net: Retirement Income Projections: Best Practices |
Kiplinger: Strategize Now to Avoid a Retirement Tax Surprise |
The Motley Fool: Thinking of Downsizing in Retirement? 4 Questions to Ask Yourself First |
NAPA Net: OMB Completes Review of Proposed MEP Rules |
NAPA Net: Risking Retirement |
NAPA Net: All (Still Very) Quiet on the Participant Trading Front |
NAPA Net: DOL, SEC Set Targets for Fiduciary, Advice Rulemaking |

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Christopher Carosa, CTFA

Christopher Carosa, CTFA

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