What's New - January 2013


SIGN UP FOR: EBRIef, a weekly update featuring both current and past EBRI research, testimony and presentations, as well as ASEC activities, regulatory updates, applicable court decisions, and research and news from across the employee benefit industry. Sign up here.

EBRIef archives

Visit EBRI's Blog!


Index to All Months                                                                                                    Return to Current Month


As a research site, EBRI.org maintains old listings in the “What’s New” page, even though some of the older links may no longer function.  If you reach a bad link, go back to the main site by deleting everything after “.com” or “.org” or ".gov" or “.net” in the address. Since we maintain www.ebri.org/ as a research and education resource, and not current news, we hope you will understand our policy and the use for which it is maintained.  We apologize for any inconvenience.


[1/31/13]  Mercer:  “Employees willing to pay for a range of voluntary benefits

[1/31/13]  Insurance News Net:  “Workers Plan to Work Longer to Keep Coverage

[1/31/13]  World Economic Forum:  Sustainable Health Systems: Visions, Strategies, Critical Uncertainties and Scenarios [A report from the World Economic Forum Prepared in collaboration with McKinsey & Company]

[1/31/13]  Plan Sponsor:

[1/31/13]  Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation:

[1/31/13]  National Academy of Social Insurance:  Strengthening Social Security: What Do Americans Want?

[1/30/13]  Plan Sponsor:  “Employers Use Benefits to Recruit Employees

[1/30/13]  IFAwebnews.com:  “HSA and HRA plans show renewed growth, according to study

[1/30/13]  U.S. Small Business Administration:  “Employers with Fewer Than 25 Employees -- Key Provisions Under the Affordable Care Act for Employers with Fewer Than 25 Employees

[1/30/13]  Devenir:  2012 Devenir HSA Research Report Executive Summary: Year-End HSA Market Statistics & Trends

[1/30/13]  Internal Revenue Service:  “2012 Reporting of 2010 Roth Rollovers and Conversions

[1/30/13]  MorningstarAdvisor:  “Diversification Pays Off for Target Date Funds -- 2012 leaders were well served by global, real estate stakes

[1/29/13]  LifeHealthPro:  “EBRI: Nearly three quarters of 401(k) plans include target date funds

[1/29/13]  October Three:  “’Fiscal cliff’ legislation and retirement benefits: 2013 explained

[1/29/13]  USA Today:  “Retirement living: Debt holds many Boomers back

[1/29/13]  Internal Revenue Service:  Regulations Relating to Information Reporting by Foreign Financial Institutions and Withholding on Certain Payments to Foreign Financial Institutions and Other Foreign Entities; Final Rule [as published in the Federal Register on Jan. 28, 2013]

[1/29/13]  HR Policy Association:  “Labor Department Sharply Restricts Private Health Care Exchanges Using Individual Policies for Active Employees

[1/29/13]  The Segal Company’s Capital Checkup:  “Proposed Rule on the Affordable Care Act’s Employer Penalty Addresses Application to Multiemployer Plans

[1/28/13]  U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics:  “The Last Private Industry Pension Plans: A Visual Essay

[1/28/13]  U.S. Department of Labor:  FAQs About Affordable Care Act Implementation Part XI [regarding the employer notice of coverage options, health reimbursement arrangements, disclosure of information related to firearms, employer group waiver plans supplementing Medicare Part D, fixed indemnity insurance and payment of PCORI fees]

[1/28/13]  Health Affairs [Blog]:  “Implementing Health Reform: Health Reimbursement Arrangements and More

[1/28/13]  MarketWatch:  “Get ready for health-care reform changes: New insurance rules will soon change costs, coverage

[1/25/13]  U.S. Department of Health & Human Services:  Modifications to the HIPAA Privacy, Security, Enforcement, and Breach Notification Rules Under the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act; Other Modifications to the HIPAA Rules; Final rule [as published in the Federal Register on Jan. 25, 2013]

[1/25/13]  Kaiser Family Foundation/Robert Wood Johnson Foundation/Harvard School of Public Health:  The Public’s Health Care Agenda for the 113th Congress

[1/25/13]  JHPPL News and Notes:  “Findings from the 2012 EBRI/MGA Consumer Engagement in Health Care Survey by Paul Fronstin :: SSRN

[1/25/13]  The New York Times [Blog]:  “Older, but Not Yet Retired

[1/25/13]  Plan Sponsor:  “The Increased Availability of Roth In-Plan Conversions

[1/25/13]  CBS MoneyWatch:  “401(k) income statements: The next subprime?

[1/24/13]  Towers Watson:  Total Rewards Strategies for the 21st Century

[1/24/13]  PIMCO DC Dialogue™:  “Juice worth the squeeze.” [“In this PIMCO DC Dialogue™, we talk with Chris Lyon and Lisa Florentine at Rocaton about how designing DC plans continues to evolve with increasing focus on reaching needed outcomes; that is, replacing a healthy percentage of a worker’s pay throughout retirement.”]

[1/24/13]  National Institute on Retirement Security Issue Brief:  “How Do Public Pensions Invest? A Primer

[1/24/13]  Kaiser Family Foundation:  Getting into Gear for 2014: Findings from a 50-State Survey of Eligibility, Enrollment, Renewal, and Cost-Sharing Policies in Medicaid and CHIP, 2012-2013

[1/23/13]  National Center for Policy Analysis [Blog]:  “EBRI’s Consumer Engagement Survey

[1/23/13]  Cerulli Associates (via 401khelpcenter.com):  “DC Assets Expected to Reach $7.3 Trillion by 2017

[1/23/13]  Investment Horizons, Inc.:  401(k) Plans: Reducing Risk, Managing Costs, and Increasing Employee Satisfaction

[1/23/13]  Plan Sponsor:  “Baby Boomer Retirements Affect Entire Economy

[1/23/13]  ADP:  Retirement Planning Mutual Gains: Creating Employee Readiness and Competitive Business Advantage

[1/23/13]  Institutional Retirement Income Council:  Retirement Income Products: Which One Is Right for Your Plan?

[1/22/13]  U.S. Department of Labor Employee Benefits Security Administration:  Proposed Information Collection Request Submitted for Public Comment; Survey Regarding Pension Benefit Statements; Notice [as published in the Federal Register on Jan. 22, 2013]

[1/22/13]  Plan Sponsor:

[1/22/13]  LifeHealthPro:  “Differences in pension plan rules determine annuitization rates

[1/22/13]  Center for State & Local Government Excellence:  State & Local Pensions: An Overview of Funding Issues and Challenges

[1/22/13]  Time Magazine:  “Flashpoint: Young Workers with a 401(k) Finally Get Diversified

[1/18/13]  Internal Revenue Service:  Application of Retroactive Increase in Excludible Transit Benefits [Notice 2013-8]

[1/18/13]  State Street Global Advisors:  Entrances, exits and in-between: Helping participants make better financial decisions -- Results and insights from the latest SSgA DC Investor Survey

[1/18/13]  Plan Sponsor:  “Pension Rules Drive Annuity Decision

[1/18/13]  CBS MoneyWatch:  “Why age 70 isn’t the new 65

[1/18/13]  Society of Actuaries’ Pension Section and Pension Section Research Committee:  Measures of Retirement Benefit Adequacy: Which, Why, for Whom, and How Much?

[1/17/13]  AARP Public Policy Institute:  What Are the Retirement Prospects of Middle-Class Americans?

[1/17/13]  Plan Sponsor:  “Employers Making Retirement Readiness a Top Priority

[1/17/13]  Aon Hewitt:  2013 Hot Topics in Retirement [Note: Full report may be downloaded at the website.]

[1/17/13]  Business Roundtable:  Social Security Reform and Medicare Modernization Proposals

[1/17/13]  The Washington Post:  “New regulations shed light on looming health-care reform costs for businesses

[1/17/13]  America’s Health Insurance Plans:  “How Is a Premium Determined? A More Complete Picture

[1/16/13]  Prudential:  Sharpening the Focus on Benefits Strategy - Economic conditions continue to put pressure on benefits programs

[1/16/13]  Buck Consultants FYI:  “HHS issues guidance on essential health benefits and actuarial value

[1/16/13]  Kaiser Health News:  “A Guide to Health Insurance Exchanges

[1/16/13]  Plan Sponsor:

[1/16/13]  The Washington Post:  “401(k) breaches undermining retirement security for millions

[1/16/13]  The Pew Charitable Trusts:  A Widening Gap in Cities: Shortfalls in Funding for Pensions and Retiree Health Care

[1/11/13]  Sibson Consulting:  Trends: Noteworthy Developments of Interest to Employers that Provide Health Coverage [First Quarter 2013]

[1/11/13]  The Doctor Weighs In:  “Cost-conscious health consumers are adopting personal health IT

[1/11/13]  Plan Sponsor:

[1/11/13]  The TIAA-CREF Institute and Independent Sector:  Financial security and careers in the nonprofit and philanthropic sector: Key findings from a joint study by the TIAA-CREF Institute and Independent Sector

[1/11/13]  MarketWatch:  “What’s ahead for Social Security in 2013 -- Reform and the coming debt-ceiling debate

[1/11/13]  Congressional Budget Office [Blog]:  “How Will Older People’s Participation in the Labor Force Be Affected by the Coming Increase in the Full Retirement Age for Social Security?

[1/10/13]  Plan Sponsor:

[1/10/13]  Fiduciary News:  “What Will 2013 Bring to the World of 401k?

[1/10/13]  Mercer:  “Health Care Reform Timeline: Key Elements of Health Reform for Employers

[1/10/13]  U.S. Department of Health & Human Services:  Guidance on the State Partnership Exchange

[1/9/13]  Plan Sponsor:  “Maximum Benefit Contributions Limit for 2002-2013 -- As Published by the Internal Revenue Service

[1/9/13]  Center for Retirement Research at Boston College:  How Do Employers’ 401(k) Mutual Fund Selections Affect Performance?

[1/9/13]  Fidelity Investments:  “Retirement checkup for the new year

[1/9/13]  MarketWatch:  “Donating retirement assets to charities -- Qualified distributions from IRAs extended by new law

[1/9/13]  Alliance for Health Reform:  High and Rising Costs of Health Care in the U.S. -- The Challenge: Changing the Trajectory

[1/9/13]  Kaiser Family Foundation:  “Implementing New Private Health Insurance Market Rules

[1/8/13]  Internal Revenue Service:

[1/8/13]  U.S. Department of Health & Human Services:  What’s Changing and When [a timeline of when provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act go into effect]

[1/8/13]  Health Affairs:  “National Health Spending in 2011: Overall Growth Remains Low, But Some Payers and Services Show Signs of Acceleration

[1/8/13]  Dallas Morning News [Blog]:  “Health insurance a key benefit for employees

[1/8/13]  Milliman 100 Pension Funding Index:  “Milliman analysis: Historic low interest rates increase pension funding deficit by $74 billion in 2012

[1/8/13]  National Association of State Retirement Administrators Issue Brief:  “Employee Contributions to Public Pension Funds

[1/7/13]  U.S. Chamber of Commerce:  Health and Retirement Priorities for the 113th Congress: The Year in Review and the Year Ahead

[1/7/13]  Kaiser Family Foundation:  “Employer Responsibility Under the Affordable Care Act

[1/7/13]  The Washington Post:  “Five facts about Obamacare and health premiums

[1/7/13]  The Segal Group:  Trends: Noteworthy Developments of Interest to Sponsors of Multiemployer Health Plans [First Quarter 2013]

[1/7/13]  Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies:  TCRS 2013-01: In-Plan Roth Conversions and the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012

[1/7/13]  Workforce:  “No-Strings-Attached Roth 401(k) Conversion Is Good Deal--for Select Few

[1/4/13]  Sibson Consulting Perspectives:  “Compensation Planning 2013: Modest Increases Expected, Consistent with Pattern Set in Recent Years

[1/4/13]  Towers Watson:  “Fiscal Cliff Deal Affects Wide Range of Benefit and Compensation Programs

[1/4/13]  The New York Times:

[1/4/13]  Gallup, Inc.:  “U.S. Investors Want Gov’t to Enhance 401(k) Accounts

[1/4/13]  Sibson Consulting Spotlight:  “The Decision to Terminate a ‘Frozen’ DB Plan

[1/4/13]  NBCNews.com:  “With fewer opportunities, Americans are staying at their jobs longer

[1/3/13]  Towers Watson:

[1/3/13]  Plan Sponsor:  “Pension Funding Levels Slightly Declined in 2012

[1/3/13]  Journal of Accountancy:

[1/3/13]  Deloitte Center for Health Solutions Issue Brief:  “Meeting the Challenge: Maximizing the value of employer-sponsored health care

[1/2/13]  Internal Revenue Service:

[1/2/13]  The New York Times:  “Employers Must Offer Family Care, Affordable or Not

[1/2/13]  The Washington Post:  “Employees and retirees can lose health insurance when a firm closes or is sold

[1/2/13]  Healthcare Finance News:  “EBRI: Consumer Directed Health Plan members more likely to research healthcare costs

[1/2/13]  U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics:

[1/2/13]  Plan Sponsor:  “Full Disclosure: Sponsors have all this information under 408(b)(2). Now what?

[1/2/13]  Sibson Consulting:  2013 Reporting & Disclosure Calendar for Benefit Plans


What's new at EBRI this month:

EBRI 2012 Fall Policy Forum:  “’Post’ Script: What’s Next for Employment-Based Health Benefits” [“gavel to gavel” webcast - Prerecorded broadcast available through the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans]

EBRI 2012 Spring Policy Forum:  “’After’ Math: The Impact and Influence of Incentives on Benefit Policy” [“gavel to gavel” webcast - Prerecorded broadcast available through the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans]

EBRI 2011 Fall Policy Forum: “Innovations in Employment-Based Health Benefits: Lessons Learned for Public Policy” [“gavel to gavel” webcast - Prerecorded broadcast available through the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans]

EBRI's Recent Media Coverage

“EBRI Now on Twitter” [EBRI Press Release, 2/6/09]

401(k) Balances and Changes Due to Market Volatility


January 2013 EBRI Issue Brief - "Health Savings Accounts and Health Reimbursement Arrangements: Assets, Account Balances, and Rollovers, 2006-2012"

January 2013 EBRI Issue Brief - "Annuity and Lump-Sum Decisions in Defined Benefit Plans: The Role of Plan Rules"

January 2013 EBRI Notes - "Views on Health Coverage and Retirement: Findings from the 2012 Health Confidence Survey®" and "Tax Preferences and Mandates: Is the Danish Savings Experience Applicable to the United States?"


What's new in employee benefits:

  • HR News Online -- a daily update from the Society for Human Resource Management

The following items have been added to the Government Accountability Office's Web site in Portable Document (PDF) format:

Private Health Insurance: Expiration of the Health Coverage Tax Credit Will Affect Participants' Costs and Coverage Choices as Health Reform Provisions Are Implemented. GAO-13-147, December 28. Highlights.

Retirement Security: Annuities with Guaranteed Lifetime Withdrawals Have Both Benefits and Risks, but Regulation Varies across States. GAO-13-75, December 10. Highlights. Podcast.

Higher Education: A Small Percentage of Families Save in 529 Plans. GAO-13-64, December 12. Highlights.

Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation: Redesigned Premium Structure Could Better Align Rates with Risk from Plan Sponsors. GAO-13-58. November 7. Highlights.

Private Sector Pensions: Federal Agencies Should Collect Data and Coordinate Oversight of Multiple Employer Plans. GAO-12-665, September 13. Highlights.

Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: Estimates of the Effect on the Prevalence of Employer-Sponsored Health Coverage. GAO-12-768, July 13. Highlights.

Retirement Security: Women Still Face Challenges. GAO-12-699, July 19. Highlights.

Retirement Security: Older Women Remain at Risk, by Barbara D. Bovbjerg, managing director, education, workforce, and income security, before the Senate Special Committee on Aging. GAO-12-825T, July 25.


If a title link above no longer works, click here for the GAO home page and search for the report by keyword or report number. Click here to browse by date,  topic, or agency.   Searches for reports can also be conducted in the Government Accountability Office (GAO) Reports Online via GPO Access database.

If your computer does not already have the free Adobe Acrobat viewer software to read PDF files, click here for the one-time download necessary to read PDF publications.



Updated 2/5/13