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The Birth of a Notion

11/06/2018
By Nevin Adams

“Unintended consequences” are generally a bad thing.  But not always.  The 401(k), for example.

Today is being celebrated as the birthday of the 401(k) – because it’s the anniversary of the day on which the Revenue Act of 1978 – which included a provision that became Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Sec. Read More >>


Impediments to Saving for Retirement – The Barriers, Part 1

11/05/2018
By Jack Towarnicky

Today’s typical histrionic, hyperbolic headline: “Retirement Crisis: Workers Can’t Afford to Save For Retirement Due to Crippling Out of Pocket Medical Expenses and Crushing Student Debt!”1 The accurate rewrite: “Saving For Retirement is Doable – Almost All Workers Have Low, Budget-able Out-of-Pocket Medical Expenses, and Student Debts. Read More >>


Few Read Mandatory Benefit Disclosures; Even Fewer Take Action (Reprise)

10/29/2018
By Jack Towarnicky

Congress has proposed that participants should pay more fees to receive yet another mandated disclosure – this time, a lifetime income estimate that participants didn’t ask for, that will almost always be inaccurate, that doesn’t apply to all retirement savings, that few will notice, even fewer will read, less still will understand, and that almost no one will correctly apply in retirement savings decision-making. Read More >>


Coincidence is not Correlation; Correlation is Not Causation

10/16/2018
By Jack Towarnicky

Consider:

  • Back in 1978, New York Times sportswriter Leonard Koppett reported that you could correctly predict stock market returns based on the Super Bowl winner.1
  • Once there are 23 people in a room, there is a 50/50 chance that two of them will share the same birthday. Read More >>

But I Repeat Myself – You Should Offer a Health Savings Account-Capable Health Option*

10/12/2018
By Jack Towarnicky

An Employee Benefits Version of Groundhog Day1

A week or so ago, in a presentation titled, Health AND Wealth in Retirement, I once again stood in front of a crowd of plan sponsors extolling the value of HSAs. Read More >>


True-up, Catch-up, What’s up?

10/10/2018
By Jack Towarnicky

“The wonderful thing about second chances is that they exist.”1

True Up – Internal Revenue Code (IRC) §§401(k) and 403(b) plans, and Health Savings Accounts (HSA)

Many Individual account savings plans and some HSAs offer an employer match. Some calculate the match each payday. Read More >>


It is Not Borrow to Save, But Save to Borrow!

10/09/2018
By Jack Towarnicky

Take action now by reviewing your retirement savings plan’s liquidity provisions.

To quote one benefits expert, “Borrowing to save—isn’t that something that only an oxymoron would do?”1   

I agree, and I disagree.    

The expert suggests your workers may be incurring high-cost debt in order to participate in employer-sponsored retirement savings plans – that foregone take home pay would be better used to:

  • Repay existing debts, and/or 
  • Avoid adding new, high-interest rate debt. Read More >>

Rethinking Rebalancing

10/03/2018
By Jack Towarnicky

Are your third-quarter statements out? If not, your participants may not want to wait to check out their recent investment performance. Those invested in domestic equities might be feeling flush as most U.S. market indices are at or near all-time highs. Read More >>


Life is Not A Dress Rehearsal For Retirement: Start doing some of those things you are dreaming about today!

09/19/2018
By Jack Towarnicky

Professor Dan Ariely and Mrs. Aline Holzwarth, principal of the Center for Advanced Hindsight, both of Duke University, posted an article in the September 4, 2018 issue of the Wall Street Journal titled, “How Much You’ll Really Spend in Retirement, Probably a Lot More Than You ThinkRead More >>


Defeating Egocentric Bias – Meeting Workers Where They Are (Second of Two Articles)

09/12/2018
By Jack Towarnicky

In a prior blog, I noted that Laraine McKinnon, LMC17, presented at our Plan Sponsor Council of America National Conference about her book Known: How to Create a Great 401(k).  My prior post focused on plan management and plan design. Read More >>


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