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Focusing on Overall Financial Wellness: Tips for Plan Sponsors

Several recent surveys have indicated a widespread lack of financial literacy among American workers. Add to this the fact that many employers struggle to engage workers in plan participation, and it becomes clear that workplace financial education could play a vital role in strengthening employer-sponsored retirement programs. Financial Wellness by the Numbers According to a 2015 LIMRA study, 95 percent of workers believe financial literacy is important. However, only 35 percent of respondents consider themselves …

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Things to Consider When Evaluating a Cash Balance Plan

Cash balance plans can be a great option for plan providers with established employees who are nearing retirement. These plans are especially good for high-income executives. Providing greater flexibility to retirement planning, they allow for additional retirement savings through a cash balance pension that can be added on top of an existing 401(k)—for a plan sometimes called a “401(k) combo plan.” Unfortunately, an incident at IBM in 1999 gave these plans some bad press early …

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Retirement Plan Rollovers: What You Need to Know

What happens when you switch to a new retirement plan? You may wish to roll money from a former plan over into the new one, but how does that work? Although rollovers may seem complicated, they are fairly straightforward, and the IRS has easy resources to guide you through the process. This easy-reference guide provides a snapshot of eligible rollover funds:  https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-tege/rollover_chart.pdf Once you’ve determined if your investments are eligible for rollover, you’ll be ready …

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The Importance of Engagement

Employee engagement is a critical aspect of the success of any retirement program. Unfortunately, employees in our country continue to under-prepare for retirement. For younger employees, retirement may seem so far off that putting money aside doesn’t register as an important concept. For employees still living paycheck to paycheck, saving for retirement may not seem like a possibility. As employees grow closer to retirement, they often become more interested in building a healthy retirement portfolio, …

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What Fed Rates Mean for Your Retirement Plan

There’s been a lot of hubbub lately over Federal Reserve rates. On December 16, 2015, Fed rates raised to 0.25 percent. This is the first rate hike since rates were lowered to zero percent in 2008, and it indicates cautious optimism from an institution that in August of 2007 held rates at 5.25 percent. Economists in favor of the recent rate hike and those against it have been debating openly since before the hike actually …

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The Impact of Global News on Your Retirement Plan

Often, when breaking news happens overseas, in countries far removed from our own, it can be difficult to recognize how this news impacts our lives. For retirement plan administrators as well as participants in those plans, however, global news can have real consequences. Some of these consequences may be noticed early while others may not be felt for months or even years. Nevertheless, a crisis in Europe, Australia, Asia or the Middle East is likely …

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Performing a Retirement Benefits Checkup

The IRS recommends that all businesses perform a retirement benefits checkup annually. If you haven’t done this recently, the beginning of a new year provides the perfect opportunity. Reasons to perform such a review include the need to update a plan to comply with new legislation as well as the need to add eligible employees to the plan. Additionally, common mistakes made in plan management can be fixed during a regularly scheduled review, and the …

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