PLANADVISER Weekend Newsdash
Week ending August 10th, 2018

Happy Friday readers! This weekend’s mailing focuses on the always timely topic of Investing, with a particular focus on risk and cost management. As we report below, the growth in target-date fund usage continues to be incredible; missing is a deeper discussion of sequence of returns risk and other potential challenges for participants associated with this growth. At the same time, new research points to a number of drivers behind the acceleration in asset management fee compression, tied to improved automation and stronger competition. We hope you will share some of what you read with a client or colleague.

Editor's choice
Getting Serious About TDF Sequence of Returns Risk
The growth in target-date fund usage continues to be incredible; missing is a deeper discussion of sequence of returns risk and other potential challenges for participants associated with this growth. Read more >
TDF Providers Adapted to Low-Cost Demand, But Plan Sponsors Still Need to Be Diligent
Investors in TDFs need to look beyond price tags to investment strategy to determine the appropriateness of the fees and should be mindful of the relatively tight dispersion of returns within TDF categories, Morningstar warns. Read more >
Asset Management Fee Compression Accelerates
New research from Cerulli points to a number of drivers behind the acceleration in asset management fee compression, tied to improved automation and stronger competition; the research and analytics firm also analyzes the competitive landscape of “robo-advice.” Read more >
Investors in U.S. Equity Funds Earned 8.32% a Year Over the Past Decade
This compares to 8.93% for the average fund, making a shortfall of 0.61 percentage points, Morningstar says. Read more >
Experts Probe Potential Signs of Variable Annuity Sales Recovery
Variable annuities continue to face challenges in the wake of transaction processing disruptions caused by the now-vacated DOL fiduciary rule; however, experts anticipate sales to recover as business processes normalize and newer product types come to market. Read more >
Opportunities Exist, But Future of CITs in 403(b) Plans Remains Murky
Higher education clients with very large 403(b) plans could theoretically benefit from new laws or regulations allowing them to invest participant assets through collective trust vehicles, but for most other non-profit clients, CITs might not make that much sense. Read more >
MOST POPULAR STORIES
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.
A New World and New Opportunities for Alpha
Pandemic-driven volatility has once again highlighted the relative virtues of active and passive management.
Home Depot ERISA Lawsuit Clears Dismissal Motions

While a court has ruled the plan’s advisers should be carved out of the litigation, the counts against Home Depot fiduciaries will proceed.

Excessive Fee Lawsuit Filed Against Duke Energy

The drumbeat of Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) excessive fee lawsuits rolls on.

AutoZone ERISA Suit Clears Motion to Dismiss

The district court declined to rule on the reasonableness of comparing actively managed funds to passively managed index funds on a motion to dismiss, clearing the way for discovery and potentially a full trial.

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