Attendees talk about Pension Focus

In this video, hear what past attendees cite as the biggest challenges in their day-to-day plan sponsor duties, and how attending Pension Focus helps them to manage these challenges.

At Pension Focus, you’ll be able to ask questions, get good answers, hear from experts and get important industry updates.

The 20th Pension Focus Conference, for sponsors of 401(k), 403(b) and DB retirement plans, will be held May 28-29, 2015 in Branson, MO. For more information, visit

PCI’s archived blog entries are dated, the rules and statutes referenced may have changed. The analysis or guidance within these blog entries may have become stale, dated, or no longer accurate. PCI will not update or change these entries to reflect the latest analysis or development.

Eight Ways We Sabotage Our Conversations about Money, and How to Avoid Them (Part One)

Sue looks back to the events surrounding the disposition of her father’s estate and says, “I’ll never talk to my sister again.” Ron remembers conversations with his siblings about his mother’s long-term care expenses and realizes he’s not going to enjoy the next family gathering, and may not even attend.

Successful retirement planning is not possible without successful communication, but think about the last conversation you had with a family member about money. Was it a pleasant experience or one filled with tension and stress? Did it help you accomplish your goals or leave you feeling frustrated about unresolved issues?Continue reading

Using Match Structures to Improve Retirement Readiness

Most plan sponsors/employers would agree that the ultimate goal of a company-sponsored retirement plan is to help participants better prepare for life after their working career is over.   With that in mind, many employers offer a company match to help encourage employees to save more for the future.

Unfortunately, there can be an unintended consequence of the employer match.Continue reading

How to Use Revenue Sharing and Still Achieve Fee Transparency

There are many costs involved in successfully sponsoring and operating a retirement plan. Those costs can include paying the people who help operate the plan, including internal staff and third party administrators, record keepers, financial advisers, and more. To pay for some of these plan services, plan sponsors may reimburse certain service providers, e.g., administrative and record keeping expenses, through the use of revenue sharing. Although there is some controversy with revenue sharing as the retirement industry moves to more fee transparency, courts have continued to reaffirm that the use of revenue sharing to pay certain plan expenses is, in fact, legal. Plan fiduciaries are still obligated to understand how the record keeping arrangement is structured and what role revenue sharing plays in that set-up. They must ultimately be able to make a determination that the fees are reasonable and the services are necessary.Continue reading

Pension Consultants Expanding Eastward to New Market

SPRINGFIELD, MO, October 29, 2014 –Pension Consultants, Inc., a leader in offering in-depth, un-conflicted advice on every aspect of retirement plan management, has begun expansion eastward into the Ohio Valley and Mid-South Region. Pension Consultants, started in 1994 in Springfield, Missouri, has served retirement plan sponsors in the Midwestern market for the past 20 years. Founder and President Brian Allen noted, “As we’ve continued to grow and expand over the last few years, we began to look to new markets. We currently serve companies with retirement plans in Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska and Arkansas from our Springfield office, and when looking to the future, feel expanding into the Ohio Valley/Mid-South market provides us with a huge opportunity.” Allen stated that the firm recently welcomed Brad Yoder as Senior Vice President-Regional Sales to facilitate the firm’s expansion, with plans to open a permanent office with support staff in Nashville, TN in the next 18 – 24 months.Continue reading

IRS Releases New Retirement Plan Limitations for 2015 Plan Year

On October 23, 2014, the Internal Revenue Service announced the 2015 Cost-of-Living Adjustments (COLA)* to the retirement plan limits.

Below is a chart outlining the new COLA limits that become effective January 1, 2015, along with the two prior tax years’ limits.

2015 COLA Limits

If you have any questions or wish to discuss the application of these limits to your retirement plan, please contact your ERISA Consultant at (800) 234-9584.

*IR-2014-99, Oct. 23, 2014.
PCI’s archived blog entries are dated, the rules and statutes referenced may have changed. The analysis or guidance within these blog entries may have become stale, dated, or no longer accurate. PCI will not update or change these entries to reflect the latest analysis or development. 

Fidelity Settles 401(k) lawsuits with Employees

In the past, we’ve talked about the roles and responsibilities of being a fiduciary. Fiduciaries to retirement plans have the responsibility to monitor the plan’s service providers, to make sure agreements are reasonable and to confirm that services being provided are necessary.

Recently, Fidelity Investments, the nation’s largest retirement plan provider, was sued by 50,000 current and past employees.Continue reading

Third Quarter 2014 Capital Markets Update

During the third quarter, both equity and fixed income markets were subdued as investor sentiment turned more cautious over signs of slower growth, continued geopolitical unrest and the Fed raising interest rates. Investor sentiment switched from risk-taking during the second quarter to risk-avoidance during the third quarter.Continue reading

The Second Phase of Life during Retirement: Slow, Slow, Slow

There are three different and distinct phases in retirement.  Initially, you will find yourself in the go, go, go phase.  You might call the second phase slow, slow, slow, later followed by the no, no, no phase. This post will focus on the second phase of retirement life, the slow, slow, slow phase (for more information on the active phase of retirement read our post on the go, go, go phase).Continue reading

How 3(38) Investment Managers can Lessen Plan Sponsor Risk

Any employer who sponsors a retirement plan knows that along with providing a great benefit to employees, offering a retirement plan creates a level of risk for the employer/plan sponsor. Although there is no way to completely alleviate all risk associated with sponsoring a retirement plan, employers can be strategic in mitigating some of their inherent risk.

One way employers should consider mitigating risk is by delegating investment decisions, such as selecting, monitoring and replacing the plan’s investments, to a 3(38) fiduciary.Continue reading