PLANADVISER Weekend Newsdash
Week ending February 17th, 2017
NOTE FROM THE EDITOR
Happy Friday, readers! We learned this week that the retirement plan advisory industry will have to wait even longer to see a Department of Labor Secretary first questioned and then either confirmed or denied by the U.S. Senate. You’ll likely have heard by now that President Trump’s first pick couldn’t get enough support to actually win the job—even from a Senate controlled by Republican allies—leading to a last-minute withdrawal for the nominee just before his confirmation hearings were set to start. Find below our initial coverage of the new nominee, Alex Acosta, along with the week’s other top news. 
Editor's choice
President Names DOL Nominee With Deeper Labor Ties
Days after the surprise withdrawal of Andrew Puzder as President Trump’s Labor Secretary nominee, the White House is now confirming their new pick for the job, former member of the National Labor Relations Board R. Alexander Acosta. Read more >
Fiduciary RIAs and Investment Brokers Have Opposing Views
A new Cogent Reports analysis explores the strong difference of opinion about the DOL fiduciary rule visible across different advisory market segments. Read more >
Lawmakers Move to Block Final Rule on State-Run Retirement Plans
Their concerns are that small businesses will be discouraged from offering retirement plans to employees, and that employees put into state-run plans will not have the protections of ERISA and will have limited control over their retirement savings. Read more >
Financial Wellness Should Focus on Building Confidence
Confidence likely has more bearing than actual financial acumen on a worker’s ability to improve his or her financial situation, Mercer concludes from survey findings. Read more >
MOST POPULAR STORIES
Stimulus Bill Extends Some Provisions of the CARES Act

It also provides a way for retirement plan sponsors to avoid a partial plan termination.

Coronavirus Hardship Withdrawals, Taxes and Your Retirement Plan Clients
Coronavirus-related withdrawals made in 2020 were a financial lifeline for some, but they could also turn into a major tax headache for others.
Warn Your Clients: Don’t Abuse Coronavirus Hardship Withdrawals
Though retirement plans can allow individuals to self-certify that they qualify for a penalty-free coronavirus-related distribution, should the IRS discover otherwise during a future audit, a participant can be subject to substantial penalties.
Many Near-Retirees Don't Understand Social Security Benefits

More than one-third failed a basic Social Security quiz administered by MassMutual.

The Most Common Retirement Plan Testing Mistakes

By alerting plan sponsors to the issues they see most often, advisers can help their clients navigate IRS testing rules.

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