What's New - August 2016

Index to All Months

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[8/24/16] PlanSponsor: “Sponsors Need to Educate Participants About Managed Accounts -- Thirty-nine percent of participants don’t know how they work.

[8/24/16] Investor’s Business Daily: “401(k) Balances That Rise The Most: 45% Of Workers Use This Strategy

[8/24/16] U.S. News & World Report: “Seldom-Used Features of 401(k) Plans -- Only a small fraction of 401(k) participants take advantage of these plan perks.

[8/24/16] Human Resource Executive Online: “Reaching Retirement Readiness -- Research and surveys find many employees are woefully unprepared for retirement. Why should HR be worried about employees’ financial well-being, and what can it do to help them put aside the funds that will lead to a comfortable retirement?

[8/24/16] Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies®: Perspectives on Retirement: Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Millennials -- 17th Annual Transamerica Retirement Survey of Workers

[8/24/16] LIMRA: “Group Pension Buy-Out Sales Top $1 Billion for Fifth Straight Quarter: LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute Survey

[8/24/16] CNBC: “California set to join states offering retirement plans -- Workers without a workplace option can now open accounts.

[8/24/16] Social Security Administration: Fast Facts & Figures About Social Security, 2016

[8/24/16] United Benefit Advisors: “Survey: PPO Deductibles Increase Fifty Percent in 2016, Employer Costs Remain Steady

[8/24/16] Reuters: “Can anything contain U.S. drug costs?

[8/24/16] HealthZette: “Keeping Drug Costs Low -- It’s About Time -- How to protect yourself against runaway prescription prices

[8/24/16] Vox.com: “Is Obamacare failing?

[8/24/16] American Hospital Association’s TrendWatch: “Individuals’ Ability to Electronically Access Their Hospital Medical Records, Perform Key Tasks is Growing

[8/24/16] KTBS.com: “Telemedicine brings specialty care to patients in rural areas

[8/24/16] Human Resource Executive Online: “Sick-Leave Laws Cause HR Headaches -- When it comes to paid sick leave, there are no easy answers for multistate employers, which must contend with a growing number of inconsistent state and local mandates.

[8/23/16] The Bond Buyer: “Should States Lower Estimates for Pension Investment Returns?

[8/23/16] NAPA Net: “Promising Progress Post-PPA Puts Plans, Participants Ahead

[8/23/16] Morning Consult: “Firms Focusing on Fiduciary Rule Compliance While Crossing Fingers on Lawsuits

[8/23/16] PlanAdviser: “Staying Within Bounds -- Does the new fiduciary rule create a fine line between education and advice?

[8/23/16] NAPA Net: “Edward Jones the Latest 401(k) Litigation Target

[8/23/16] Bloomberg BNA: “Fidelity, HP, United Airlines Sued Over 401(k) Float Practice

[8/23/16] Segal Consulting: “IRS Proposed Rules for Deferred Compensation Plans Present an Opportunity to Review Design

[8/23/16] InsuranceNewsNet: “Advisors Cry Foul Over Mandated Auto-IRAs

[8/23/16] Willis Towers Watson: “U.S. Employers Expect Health Care Costs to Increase 5.0% in both 2016 and 2017 -- Willis Towers Watson survey finds cost pressures lead to modest plan changes in costly services

[8/23/16] International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans: “Dealing With IRS 1095 Form Rejection

[8/23/16] Kaiser Health News: “Clinton To Propose Expanded Tax Credits To Help Small Businesses Provide Workers Health Insurance

[8/23/16] PlanSponsor: “Most Americans Concerned About Health Care Costs in Retirement

[8/22/16] Society for Human Resource Management: “The Problem with Measuring the ROI of Benefits

[8/22/16] Plan Sponsor Council of America: “Both Employers and Employees Are Doing More to Save More: 2016 Plan Sponsor Council of America survey highlights 403(b) plan trends

[8/22/16] PlanSponsor: “What the 403(b) Excessive Fee Lawsuits Do Not Consider

[8/22/16] Vanguard Blog for Institutional Investors: “The end of ‘choice overload’

[8/22/16] Bloomberg BNA: “SunTrust’s 401(k) Plan Participants Get OK for Class Action

[8/22/16] Federal News Radio: “Phased retirement: the real reason it fizzled

[8/22/16] Lincoln Financial Group: M.O.O.D. of America [“The annual Measuring Optimism, Outlook and Direction (M.O.O.D.) of America Survey presents an insightful cross-sectional view of Americans' attitudes and behaviors toward retirement, health, personal life, wealth and finances.”]

[8/22/16] American Journal of Managed Care: “Employees Have Positive Attitudes Toward Workplace Wellness Programs, but Participation Is Low

[8/22/16] HealthSavings Administrators and HSA Coach: Making HSAs Relevant to Millennials

[8/22/16] American Enterprise Institute: “Bridging the divide on Health Savings Accounts to deliver higher value health care

[8/22/16] The Commonwealth Fund: Who Are the Remaining Uninsured and Why Haven’t They Signed Up for Coverage? Findings from The Commonwealth Fund Affordable Care Act Tracking Survey, February-April 2016

[8/22/16] The Huffington Post: “From Patient to Consumer: Reimagining Health Care From a Consumer Perspective

[8/22/16] News-Medical.net: “Next generation wearables for health monitoring: An interview with Dr Steven LeBoeuf

[8/19/16] International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans: “More Threads to Weave Into the Wellness Incentive Compliance Tapestry

[8/19/16] TIME: “Your Retirement Health Care Tab: $260,000 -- Fidelity’s estimate for a 65-year-old couple is up 6% from a year ago.

[8/19/16] Xerox Corporation [Blog]: “Health Savings Accounts: Withdrawals

[8/19/16] PBS NewsHour: “Hidden plan exclusions may leave gaps in women’s care, study finds

[8/19/16] AHIP Data Brief: “Orphan Drug Utilization and Price Changes (2012 - 2014)

[8/19/16] National Public Radio: “Where Insurers’ Exits Are Hurting Obamacare Exchanges -- And Where They Aren’t

[8/19/16] Vox.com: “There’s a simple fix for Obamacare’s current woes: the public option

[8/19/16] ForUsAll, Inc.: “401(k) Provider Shopping Guide: 15 Questions to Ask & When to Ask Them

[8/19/16] NAPA Net: “4 More University 403(b) Plans Sued for Excessive Fees

[8/19/16] CNBC: “Stop using retirement accounts as emergency funds

[8/19/16] TheStreet: “In Retirement, That Emergency Fund Is Even More Important

[8/19/16] Retirement Income Journal: “Vanguard continues to dominate mutual fund flows: Morningstar” [Note: A subscription may be required to view the full article.]

[8/19/16] USA Today: “Some companies force workers to stop working, use time off

[8/18/16] Internal Revenue Service: “ACA and Employers: Understanding the Terms Affordable and Minimum Value Coverage” [IRS Health Care Tax Tip 2016-65, Aug. 17, 2016]

[8/18/16] Devenir Research: 2016 Midyear HSA Market Statistics & Trends [Note: The full executive summary report can be downloaded at the website.]

[8/18/16] Willis Towers Watson Insider: “Government proposes rules for employer opt-out payments under ACA

[8/18/16] ABD Insurance & Financial Services: “Compliance Alert - ERISA Non-Compliance Just Became More Costly (and the DOL has Proposed to Make Compliance More Complicated)

[8/18/16] Fidelity Investments: Plan Sponsor Attitudes -- Survey Results: 7th Edition

[8/18/16] Bloomberg BNA: “Many DC Plan Sponsors Hesitate to Offer Lifetime Income Products

[8/18/16] PlanAdviser: “Participants Would Welcome Automatic Enrollment at 6% -- They also value a match more than they do a salary increase.

[8/18/16] CNBC: “401(k) nightmares: What NOT to do with retirement-plan cash

[8/18/16] Proskauer’s ERISA Practice Center Blog: “Update on Lawsuits Challenging the U.S. Department of Labor’s Fiduciary Rule

[8/18/16] Center for Retirement Research at Boston College’s Squared Away Blog: “Social Security Replaces Less for Couples

[8/17/16] TIME: “5 Ways This Landmark Law Changed Retirement Saving

[8/17/16] PlanSponsor: “401(k)s Challenging the 3% Auto Enrollment Default Rate -- However, the average deferral rate for the plans that T. Rowe Price administers is 7%, well below the recommended 15%.

[8/17/16] T. Rowe Price: Reference Point 2016: T. Rowe Price Defined Contribution Plan Data (As of December 31, 2015)

[8/17/16] LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute:

[8/17/16] Military.com: “Pentagon Makes Push to Educate Troops on New Retirement Plan

[8/17/16] Ice Miller LLP: “Fee Litigation Hits Higher Education

[8/17/16] CBS MoneyWatch: “Private health exchanges: Coming to your employer?

[8/17/16] Medical Practice Insider: “Why small and mid-size employers are increasingly opting to pay workers’ medical costs directly

[8/17/16] Employee Benefit Adviser: “Healthcare costs decline, but remain expensive

[8/17/16] Kaiser Health News: “Long-Term Stability Of ACA In Doubt As Insurers Continue To Jump Ship

[8/17/16] HR Dive: “22% of companies now offering mindfulness training

[8/17/16] Health Affairs Health Policy Briefs: “Telehealth Parity Laws

[8/16/16] American Benefits Council: State-Enacted Retirement Savings Programs for Private-Sector Employees: Principles to Guide Us

[8/16/16] PlanSponsor: “DC Retirement Plan Leakage Slightly Down in Q1 2016

[8/16/16] Vanguard: A Powerful Combination: Target-Date Funds and Managed Accounts

[8/16/16] Cammack Retirement Group: “Cammack Retirement Investment Research - Alternative Investments in Defined Contribution Plans

[8/16/16] Social Security Administration: OASDI Beneficiaries by State and County, 2015 [“This annual publication provides data on the Social Security population at the local level. It presents basic program data by type of benefit (retirement, survivors, and disability) and category of beneficiary (retired and disabled workers, wives and husbands, widows and widowers, and children).”]

[8/16/16] The Motley Fool: “Here’s How Much Money You Could Retire With by Saving $10, $20, $40, $50, or $100 Per Week -- Saving a little now could have a big impact later in life.

[8/16/16] Journal of Accountancy: “More companies funding credentials for employees

[8/16/16] National Public Radio: “Will Your Prescription Meds Be Covered Next Year? Better Check!

[8/16/16] California Healthline: “When It’s Time to Split Up the Family” [regarding choosing different health plans for different members of the family]

[8/16/16] Kaiser Family Foundation Data Note: “Similar But Not the Same: How Medicare Per Capita Spending Compares For Younger and Older Beneficiaries

[8/12/16] Prudential Financial: Insights for Optimizing Your Employee Benefit Program

[8/12/16] Vanguard Blog for Institutional Investors: “Solving the retirement savings paradox one client at a time

[8/12/16] ICI Research Report: “Defined Contribution Plan Participants’ Activities, First Quarter 2016

[8/12/16] AQR Capital Management, LLC: How Much Should DC Savers Worry About Expected Returns? [Note: The white paper can be downloaded at the website.]

[8/12/16] Nationwide®: “Financial Advisors on Track to Implement New Department of Labor Rule Standards

[8/12/16] NAPA Net: “3 More University Retirement Plans Draw Excessive Fee Suits

[8/12/16] CAPTRUST Financial Advisors: “Choosing a Beneficiary for Your IRA or 401(k)

[8/12/16] USA Today: “New retiree withdrawal rate: Goodbye 4%, hello age divided by 20

[8/12/16] Kaiser Health News: “More Small, Midsized Firms Choose to Pay Workers’ Medical Costs Directly

[8/12/16] HSA Bank: DOL Fiduciary Standards: Potential Impact on HSAs

[8/12/16] USA Today: “Aetna will give its employees a break on student loans

[8/11/16] LIMRA [Blog]: “Paper or Digital? Employee Benefit Enrollment Disconnect Could Hurt Employers

[8/11/16] Bloomberg BNA: “Most Major U.S. Companies Will Offer Telehealth Benefits, Hoping to Please Workers

[8/11/16] Groom Law Group Benefits Brief: “House Republicans Advance Health Care Reform Proposals

[8/11/16] Charles Schwab: 2016 401(k) Participant Survey Results

[8/11/16] Principal Financial Group and The Center for Generational Kinetics: Filling the Financial Knowledge Gap for All Generations -- Insights about where American employees go for financial advice, which sources they most value, and their attitudes about digital tools

[8/11/16] American Century Investments®: “American Century Investments® Releases Fourth Annual Plan Participant Study Results

[8/10/16] Business Insurance: “PBGC multiemployer pension program could be broke by 2025

[8/10/16] Vanguard Commentary: “Regulatory Brief: The Final DOL Fiduciary Rule: What It Means to Plan Sponsors

[8/10/16] NAPA Net: “Why Don’t More Small Employers Offer Retirement Plans?

[8/10/16] Bloomberg BNA: “Portable Benefits Stir Interest on Capitol Hill

[8/10/16] PlanSponsor: “TDF Market Complexity Brings Opportunity -- New Cerulli Associates research offers some timely thoughts on target-date fund customization.

[8/10/16] Society for Human Resource Management: “Employees May Profit from Less Choice in 401(k) Plans -- Individual choice in 401(k) funds could yield lower returns than an investment advisor’s selections

[8/10/16] TheStreet: “37% of Young U.S. Adults Have Absolutely No Money Saved for Retirement -- When will U.S. retirement savings rates hit bottom? For the younger set, that’s pretty soon, according to some industry experts.

[8/10/16] TIME: “Almost Half of Millennial Women Aren’t Saving for Retirement

[8/10/16] Willis Towers Watson Insider: “IRS Provides Guidance on Future Determination Letter Program

[8/10/16] Lawton Retirement Plan Consultants: “Social Security Changes Likely Soon

[8/10/16] Society for Human Resource Management: “Transparency, Decision Support Are Next Wave in Benefits Self-Service -- As open enrollment season approaches, time for a systems check

[8/10/16] Human Resource Executive Online: “Is Starbucks Leading or Following? The coffee retailer recently moved 160,000 workers to a private health-insurance exchange, following a similar move by a few other high-profile organizations. But why haven’t more companies embraced the new exchange model?

[8/10/16] Kaiser Health News: “Big Companies Expect Moderate Increases In 2017 Employee Health Care Costs

[8/10/16] International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans: “Family-Friendly Benefits--How Do You Measure Up?

[8/9/16] Human Resource Executive Online: “3 Ways to Keep Pace as Boomers Retire -- Baby-boomer retirement has changed the face of the American workforce. And as aging employees retire -- more and more of them every day -- someone needs to fill their shoes. What is your organization doing to ensure the right people are being prepared to take their place?

[8/9/16] Willis Towers Watson Insider: “House Health Care Bills Would Affect Mental Health Parity, HSAs and FSAs

[8/9/16] Avalere: “Outpatient Services Are the Largest Driver of 2017 Premium Increases

[8/9/16] Wolters Kluwer Law & Business: “Self-insured health plans have increased among small and midsized firms

[8/9/16] Benefitfocus [Blog]: “TPA Transformation: Turning Data into Decisions

[8/9/16] Center for Retirement Research at Boston College’s Squared Away Blog: “Rising Health Costs a Factor in Inequality

[8/9/16] Employment Policies Institute: “The Labor Market Impacts of Paid Sick Leave -- Evidence from Connecticut

[8/9/16] Milliman 100 Pension Funding Index: “Milliman Analysis: Record-low interest rates drive another increase in the pension funding deficit

[8/9/16] PlanAdviser: “Clear Link Between Traditional IRAs and Rollovers

[8/9/16] NAPA Net: “Tibble Gets (Another) Day in Court

[8/5/16] ICI Research Report: “The IRA Investor Profile: Traditional IRA Investors’ Activity, 2007-2014

[8/5/16] ICI Research Report: “The IRA Investor Profile: Roth IRA Investors’ Activity, 2007-2014

[8/5/16] TIME: “Should Your 401(k) ‘Nudge’ You Into an Annuity?

[8/5/16] Xerox Corporation FYI®: “Proposed Overhaul of Form 5500 Slated for 2019 Plan Years

[8/5/16] Center for Retirement Research at Boston College: How Work & Marriage Trends Affect Social Security’s Family Benefits [Note: The full brief can be downloaded at the website.]

[8/5/16] HR Daily Advisor: “Ask the Expert: Benefits Continuation during Leave of Absence?

[8/5/16] Bloomberg QuickTake: “Health Insurance Exchanges

[8/4/16] PlanAdviser: “Nearly All Sponsors Would Recommend Their Adviser to Another Employer

[8/4/16] NAPA Net: “Despite Student Debt, Millennials Making Room for Retirement

[8/4/16] Charles Schwab: “Retirement Savings: Making Up for Lost Time

[8/4/16] U.S. Department of Labor Office of the Secretary: Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Employee Benefit Plan Claims Procedure Under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act; Notice [as published in the Federal Register on August 4, 2016 - SUMMARY: The Department of Labor (DOL) will submit the Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) sponsored information collection request (ICR) titled, “Employee Benefit Plan Claims Procedure Under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act,” to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) on July 29, 2016, for review and approval for continued use, without change, in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq. Public comments on the ICR are invited. DATES: The OMB will consider all written comments that agency receives on or before September 6, 2016.]

[8/4/16] Bloomberg BNA: “Trinity Health Settles Church Pension Suit for $75M

[8/4/16] Society for Human Resource Management: “Small Businesses Are Dropping Health Coverage; Large Employers Hold Steady

[8/4/16] PlanSponsor: “Employees Find Wellness Programs Ineffective

[8/4/16] National Public Radio: “How Your Health Data Lead a Not-So-Secret Life Online

[8/4/16] Kaiser Health News: “Campaign For Universal Health Care In Colorado Seeks Bernie Sanders’ Help

[8/3/16] Benefits Quarterly: “The Importance of Preserving Tax-Preferred Status for Employer-Sponsored Health and Retirement Plans

[8/3/16] Congressional Budget Office: Options to Improve the Financial Condition of the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation’s Multiemployer Program

[8/3/16] PlanSponsor: “Fidelity Finds Millennial 401(k) Account Balances at Record Levels

[8/3/16] Newsmax.com: “Motley Fool: Stop Believing These 5 Retirement Myths

[8/3/16] CBS Boston: “Are You Over the Hill: Have You Saved Enough for Retirement?

[8/3/16] Smart Business: “How alternate funding and tools can help control small group health plans

[8/3/16] HRBenefitsAlert.com: “Top 5 ways HR can bolster workers’ FSA participation

[8/3/16] Employee Benefit Adviser: “Online tools increasingly important in healthcare market

[8/2/16] PlanSponsor: “Small Employers Cutting Health Care Coverage

[8/2/16] Kaiser Family Foundation: “How ACA Marketplace Premiums Measure Up to Expectations

[8/2/16] American Journal of Managed Care: “Evolving Expectations of Consumers on the ACA’s Exchanges

[8/2/16] Internal Revenue Service: Information Reporting of Catastrophic Health Coverage and Other Issues Under Section 6055; Notice of proposed rulemaking [as published in the Federal Register on August 2, 2016 - SUMMARY: This document contains proposed regulations relating to information reporting of minimum essential coverage under section 6055 of the Internal Revenue Code (Code). Health insurance issuers, certain employers, and others that provide minimum essential coverage to individuals must report to the IRS information about the type and period of coverage and furnish related statements to covered individuals. These proposed regulations affect health insurance issuers, employers, governments, and other persons that provide minimum essential coverage to individuals. DATES: Written or electronic comments and requests for a public hearing must be received by October 3, 2016.]

[8/2/16] The Wall Street Journal: “New Online 401(k) Plans Disrupt Retirement Market -- Online plans bring robo-style investment services to workers at small businesses

[8/2/16] NAPA Net: “Proprietary Funds Prompt Another Participant Suit

[8/2/16] The Motley Fool: “How to Tell if You’re Ready to Retire -- There’s no magic formula for determining your retirement readiness, but here’s how to figure out if you’re financially ready.

[8/2/16] Aon Hewitt and American Benefits Institute: 2015-16 Global Benefits Governance and Operations Study

[8/1/16] U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Employment Cost Index - June 2016 [News Release]

[8/1/16] NAPA Net: “Average 401(k) Balances Bounce Back in July

[8/1/16] MSN: “Your 401k Is Not Safe at Home

[8/1/16] Milliman’s Benefits Perspectives: “Helping employees in their retirement: 401(k) decisions, decisions, decisions!

[8/1/16] CNBC: “Older boomers face IRA withdrawals or a 50% tax

[8/1/16] Internal Revenue Service: “Correcting Required Minimum Distribution Failures

[8/1/16] Las Vegas Review-Journal: “Need for pension reform becoming more urgent

[8/1/16] NJ Spotlight: “Op-Ed: Constitutional Amendment Is Only Solution to NJ’s Pension Crisis

[8/1/16] PlanSponsor: “How the DOL Fiduciary Rule May Impact HSA Administration

[8/1/16] Morningstar: “It Pays to Shop Around for HSAs -- Settling for underperforming funds or high fees is costly.

[8/1/16] Healthcare Finance: “Price transparency websites need to be simple, help patients interpret the data, expert says

[8/1/16] InsuranceNewsNet: “When Big Insurance Companies Merge, Who Benefits?
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What's new at EBRI this month:

EBRI 2016 Spring Policy Forum: "Employee Engagement in Health and Retirement Challenges and Reforms" [“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]

Change in Average Account Balances (by Age and Tenure)

Publications:

August 2016 EBRI Notes - "Reducing Retirement Savings Leakage"

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What's new in employee benefits:


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

Reports
Retirement Security: Low Defined Contribution Savings May Pose Challenges.
GAO-16-408, May 5. Highlights.

Retirement Security: Shorter Life Expectancy Reduces Projected Lifetime Benefits for Lower Earners.
GAO-16-354, March 25. Highlights.

Retirement Security: Better Information on Income Replacement Rates Needed to Help Workers Plan for Retirement.
GAO-16-242, March 1. Highlights.

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.  

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.

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Updated 8/24/16