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Benefit BLOG

Benefits @ Work

  • Play or Pay Penalty Notices Are Coming
    The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has started the process of levying penalties on employers under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) employer shared responsibility provision. Often called the employer mandate or play or pay, the ACA provides for the IRS…
    - 29 Nov 17, 10:45am -
  • Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Changes
    Question: With the recent Executive Order rescinding DACA, do we need to do anything different for our employees who are enrolled in the program? Answer: Given the recent news headlines around immigration, a lot of employers may wonder which change…
    - 19 Sep 17, 2:59pm -
  • Breaking News: Costly Overtime Rule Struck Down
    September 1st, 2017   On August 31, 2017, Federal District Court Judge Amos Mazzant overturned the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) Final Overtime Rule that would have doubled the annual salary level to qualify for exemption from overtime from $23,…
    - 1 Sep 17, 2:23pm -
  • When to Say Goodbye to Your Benefits Broker
    For many businesses, the process of choosing and administering a health insurance benefits program is a daunting one. They often turn to benefits brokers to help them select and implement plans. Traditional benefits brokers offer assistance in choosi…
    - 1 Sep 17, 10:39am -
  • What are CSR Payment Plans?

    What are CSR Payment Plans?

    There is quite a bit of talk these days about how uncertainty around CSR Payments could cripple the individual health insurance market (see article). This brings up a good question – What are CSR Payment Plans? Cost Sharing Reduction (CSR) A discou…
    - 25 Aug 17, 9:17am -
  • The New Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC)

    The New Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC)

    As open enrollment season approaches, employers and their advisors are getting ready to use the new Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) format required under federal rules. The basic rules have been in place for several years, but 2017 is the firs…
    - 22 Aug 17, 11:43am -
  • Level Premium Self Funding
    Here is a quick video explanation for a concept that is gaining in popularity. Take a look and let us know if you have any questions:
    - 15 Aug 17, 2:27pm -
  • What are pay-per-use Health Insurance plans?
    As health care costs continue to rise, level funding and self-funding are becoming a more and more attractive option for smaller companies. Technically speaking Benefit Administration Group uses level funded health insurance and insurance captives…
    - 18 Jul 17, 12:40pm -
  • Human Resources Q & A of the Day
    Question: We’ve hired a new employee and have agreed to reimburse their COBRA premium until they become eligible for our insurance. They provided us with proof (copies of checks and invoices) that they paid a 3rd party administrator for their COBR…
    - 11 Jul 17, 12:18pm -
  • Human Resources Q & A of the Day
    Question: Should an employee’s background check, interview notes, and benefit information be kept separate from the personnel file? Answer: As a best practice (and in certain instances it is legally required), employers should keep certain employee…
    - 10 Jul 17, 10:45am -

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Pension Pulse (CAN)

  • newCDPQ's 2019 Annual Report

    CDPQ's 2019 Annual Report

    Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) just released its 2019 Annual Report:Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) today released its Annual Report for the year ended December 31, 2019, a little later than usual due to the excepti…
    - 2 hours ago, 3 Jun 20, 1:23am -
  • newBlake Hutcheson is Now OMERS' New CEO

    Blake Hutcheson is Now OMERS' New CEO

    OMERS today made it official, announcing Blake Hutcheson the new CEO to continue global expansion:OMERS is pleased to announce the official appointment of Blake Hutcheson as President and CEO, effective today. Mr. Hutcheson, currently OMERS President…
    - 14 hours ago, 2 Jun 20, 1:11pm -
  • Can Money Printing Trump a Depression?

    Can Money Printing Trump a Depression?

    Fred Imbert of CNBC reports stocks extend losses ahead of Trump China news conference:The S&P 500 rose slightly on Friday, erasing losses earlier in the session, as traders breathed a sigh of relief after President Donald Trump signaled no changes to…
    - 2 days ago, 1 Jun 20, 9:32am -
  • CAAT Pension Plan Gains 16% in 2019

    CAAT Pension Plan Gains 16% in 2019

    Yaelle Gang of the Canadian Investment Review reports that CAAT pension plan returns 16% in 2019, well-positioned to weather coronavirus storm:The Colleges of Applied Arts and Technology pension plan saw a strong 2019, delivering a 16 per cent return…
    - 5 days ago, 28 May 20, 10:20pm -
  • CPPIB Gains 3.1% in Fiscal 2020

    CPPIB Gains 3.1% in Fiscal 2020

    Pete Evans of CBC News reports CPP adds $17 billion to assets now worth more than $409 billion despite the pandemic:The Canada Pension Plan earned a return of 3.1 per cent after expenses during the financial year ended March 31, the board that manage…
    - 5 days ago, 28 May 20, 4:00pm -
  • Top Funds' Activity in Q1 2020

    Top Funds' Activity in Q1 2020

    Jason Orestes of The Street reports Amazon is clearly what hedge funds are betting on these days:Amazon has been a major beneficiary of the Covid-19 chaos, and hedge funds have taken notice.The fastest bear market in history saw a 30% plummet followe…
    - 7 days ago, 27 May 20, 11:01am -
  • US Public Pensions Less Than 60% Funded?

    US Public Pensions Less Than 60% Funded?

    Steffan Navedo-Perez of Chief Investment Officer reports that Goldman Sachs estimates public pensions are now less than 60% funded on average:Average funding ratios for public pension funds have declined to 60% and below, down from 74% before the cri…
    - 7 days ago, 26 May 20, 5:04pm -
  • IMCO's Big Stake in Apollo's New Fund

    IMCO's Big Stake in Apollo's New Fund

    Christine Idzelis of Institutional Investor reports that Apollo took just two months to raise a credit fund that seeks to profit from tumultuous markets — and it got a swift and significant contribution from Canadian pension manager IMCO:When Apo…
    - 10 days ago, 23 May 20, 6:09pm -
  • A Paradigm Shift For Real Estate?

    A Paradigm Shift For Real Estate?

    Matthew Haag of the New York Times reports Manhattan faces a reckoning if working from home becomes the norm:Before the coronavirus crisis, three of New York City’s largest commercial tenants — Barclays, JP Morgan Chase and Morgan Stanley — had…
    - 12 days ago, 22 May 20, 9:28am -
  • CDPQ's Cirque du Soleil Show?

    CDPQ's Cirque du Soleil Show?

    Josh Kosman of the New York Post reports that buyout giant TPG is hoping to profit off Cirque du Soleil bankruptcy:The private equity giant that rode Cirque du Soleil to the brink of bankruptcy now wants to share in the spoils, The Post has learned.T…
    - 12 days ago, 21 May 20, 4:14pm -
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Pension Risk Matters

  • CLE Webinar About ERISA and Hedge Funds and Private Equity Funds

    CLE Webinar About ERISA and Hedge Funds and Private Equity Funds

    I am pleased to announce that I will be speaking as part of an upcoming Strafford live webinar, "Alternative Investments in ERISA Retirement Plans: Mitigating Liability Risks for Hedge and Private Equity Funds and Pension Plan Fiduciaries" schedule…
    - 16 May 17, 2:23am -
  • Investment Fraud and the Role of Trust

    Investment Fraud and the Role of Trust

    This article entitled “Investment Fraud and the Role of Trust” by Dr. Susan Mangiero was originally published on April 19, 2017 in The Fraud Examiner, a publication of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners that is distributed to some 65,0…
    - 25 Apr 17, 5:13am -
  • Funny Courtroom Film Still Used For Teaching

    Funny Courtroom Film Still Used For Teaching

    I had a chance to watch My Cousin Vinny on television the other night and was reminded how humor is such a powerful storytelling tool. How many times do we remember important concepts because the speaker or writer makes us laugh? Tickling our funny…
    - 10 Apr 17, 12:11am -
  • Pension Blog Turns 11 On Same Day As National Fiduciary Day

    Pension Blog Turns 11 On Same Day As National Fiduciary Day

    Last year, I celebrated a decade of posting investment governance insights to Pension Risk Matters. This year, I have two reasons to say "hooray." March 23 marks the eleventh year of posting analyses, research updates and essays about managing money…
    - 23 Mar 17, 11:52pm -
  • Are You Stressed Out?

    Are You Stressed Out?

    For anyone who is stressed out and needs a literary cupcake or other type of relaxing break, check out my new inspirational gift book. I hope you enjoy The Big Squeeze: Hugs & Inspirations For Every Grown-Up Who Loves Teddy Bears. You can click h…
    - 6 Mar 17, 5:07pm -
  • Can A Retirement Plan Have Too Much Risk Management?

    Can A Retirement Plan Have Too Much Risk Management?

    The issue of excess has been on my mind lately, mostly focused on my fragrance collection but now expanding to the topic of investment risk management. More specifically, as I continue to lead workshops about retirement plan risk management for the…
    - 28 Feb 17, 2:33pm -
  • Dr. Lee Heavner Joins Dr. Susan Mangiero to Discuss Derivatives and Fiduciary Duty

    Dr. Lee Heavner Joins Dr. Susan Mangiero to Discuss Derivatives and Fiduciary Duty

    As a follow-up to my January 12, 2017 announcement about retirement plan risk management education with the Professional Risk Managers' International Association ("PRMIA"), I am delighted to announce a co-presenter for the March 2, 2017 learning ev…
    - 27 Feb 17, 3:07am -
  • New Book by Dr. Susan Mangiero - Smiles On Every Page

    New Book by Dr. Susan Mangiero - Smiles On Every Page

    Hot off the press, The Big Squeeze (Happy Day Press, 2017) by Dr. Susan Mangiero is the result of many months of research about positivity. Inspired by the enduring appeal of teddy bears for grown-ups of all ages, The Big Squeeze is a sweet and upl…
    - 22 Feb 17, 10:20pm -
  • Establishing Risk Management Protocols for Defined Benefit Plans and Defined Contribution Plans

    Establishing Risk Management Protocols for Defined Benefit Plans and Defined Contribution Plans

    As a follow-up to my January 12, 2017 announcement about retirement plan risk management education with the Professional Risk Managers' International Association ("PRMIA"), I am delighted to announce a co-presenter for the February 23, 2017 learning…
    - 21 Feb 17, 12:09am -
  • Thank You for Blog of the Week Recognition

    Thank You for Blog of the Week Recognition

    I was recently informed by Fiduciary News editor Chris Carosa that my blog post entitled "Effective Retirement Plan Communications" (January 8, 2017) was selected "Blog of the Week" for the second week of January. Thank you to Chris and his loyal r…
    - 20 Feb 17, 11:44pm -

The Benefit Blog

  • Everything You Need to Know About Required 401(k) and IRA Withdrawals
    via Wall Street Journal   If you are one of the millions of Americans with a retirement-savings account, three of the most important letters in your financial life might be these: RMD. They stand for required minimum distribution, which is … Conti…
    - 6 Feb 17, 4:10pm -
  • Some Rare Good News for Small Businesses Paying Employee Health Costs
    via Wall Street Journal Small businesses can once again use pretax funds to reimburse workers for health-care costs, especially premiums for individual and family coverage. In a little noticed move, Congress late last year reauthorized Health Reimb…
    - 30 Jan 17, 6:40pm -
  • What Happens When Doctors Only Take Cash
    via Time When Art Villa found out, after one too many boating accidents, that he needed a total knee replacement, he began asking around to see how much it would cost. The hospital near his home in Helena, Mont., would … Continue reading →
    - 27 Jan 17, 7:09pm -
  • Federal Judge Blocks Aetna-Humana Merger on Antitrust Grounds
    via Wall Street Journal WASHINGTON—A federal judge Monday blocked the proposed merger of health insurers Aetna Inc. and Humana Inc. on antitrust grounds, a potentially fatal blow to the $34 billion deal and a capstone victory for Justice Department…
    - 27 Jan 17, 2:03pm -
  • Federal Judge Blocks Aetna-Humana Merger on Antitrust Grounds
    via Wall Street Journal WASHINGTON—A federal judge Monday blocked the proposed merger of health insurers Aetna Inc. and Humana Inc. on antitrust grounds, a potentially fatal blow to the $34 billion deal and a capstone victory for Justice Department…
    - 23 Jan 17, 7:26pm -
  • Trump Nominees Take Aim at Tax Reform and the Fiduciary Rule
    via Lockton Beacon As a new administration takes office, the retirement plan community scratches their collective heads about what to expect. Donald Trump assumes the presidency with no prior public service, presenting very few tea leaves for us to r…
    - 20 Jan 17, 5:07pm -
  • UnitedHealth’s Revenue, Profit Tops Forecasts
    via WSJ UnitedHealth Group Inc. reported a 56% increase in profit in the latest quarter, with results fueled by growth in its core insurance unit and its Optum health-services arm, as well as reduced impact from its money-losing Affordable Care … C…
    - 20 Jan 17, 5:02pm -
  • ACA Repeal Effort Edges Forward, Still Little Clarity on Timeline for Replacement
    via Lockton Benefits Group This week, Congressional Republicans cleared important procedural hurdles on the path to repealing several components of the Affordable Care Act, including the individual and employer mandate penalties. GOP infighting, howe…
    - 16 Jan 17, 4:16pm -
  • Putting Health into the Health Care Debate
    via RAND Corporation One of the many curious aspects of the recent presidential election was the virtual absence of discussion about America’s health. To be sure, the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, was front and center, but the … C…
    - 10 Jan 17, 7:18pm -
  • Playing With House Money
    via American Thinker Everyone’s familiar with the term “house money.” When you’re playing with house money, you’re gambling or spending money that’s not actually yours, so the perceived risk is lower than it would be if it were your money…
    - 9 Dec 16, 6:08pm -
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