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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 -

Employee Benefits Blog

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Pension Pulse (CAN)

  • newQuant Quake 2.0 and QE Infinity Unnerving Investors?

    Quant Quake 2.0 and QE Infinity Unnerving Investors?

    Robbin Wigglesworth of the Financial Times reports how the drop in hot stocks stirs memories of ‘quant quake’:The stock market may appear tranquil again after a rollercoaster summer, but many analysts and investors are unnerved by violent moves b…
    - 13 hours ago, 14 Sep 19, 11:14pm -
  • The DB Pension Plan Model Has Failed?

    The DB Pension Plan Model Has Failed?

    Brent Simmons, Senior Managing Director & Head, Defined Benefit Solutions at Sun Life, wrote an op-ed for the Globe & Mail on why the DB pension plan business model has failed – and everyone is paying the price:For the past 20 years, many private-s…
    - 2 days ago, 13 Sep 19, 9:20am -
  • OMERS on Closing the Asia Infrastructure Gap

    OMERS on Closing the Asia Infrastructure Gap

    Michael Rolland, President and Chief Operating Officer, Asia-Pacific at OMERS, wrote an interesting comment for the Milken Institute offering a Canadian pension investment executive's perspective on closing the infrastructure gap in Asia:Twenty-six t…
    - 3 days ago, 12 Sep 19, 3:30pm -
  • Big Moves at OPTrust, OTPP and PSP

    Big Moves at OPTrust, OTPP and PSP

    OPTrust recently appointed Peter Lindley as its president and CEO:OPTrust, one of Canada’s largest defined benefit pension plans, today announced the appointment of Peter Lindley as the President and CEO of the organization, effective September 16,…
    - 4 days ago, 11 Sep 19, 1:04pm -
  • CPPIB Buys an 8% Stake in India's Delhivery

    CPPIB Buys an 8% Stake in India's Delhivery

    Leroy Leo of livemint reports that the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board just bought an 8% stake in Delhivery for $115 million through its Fundamental Equities Asia Group:Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) has invested $115 million in De…
    - 5 days ago, 10 Sep 19, 1:21pm -
  • The Next Big Short?

    The Next Big Short?

    Bloomberg's Reed Stevenson reports The Big Short’s Michael Burry explains why index funds are like subprime CDOs:For an investor whose story was featured in a best-selling book and an Oscar-winning movie, Michael Burry has kept a surprisingly low p…
    - 6 days ago, 9 Sep 19, 11:14am -
  • Sweden's AP3 Gains 10.8% in H1 2019

    Sweden's AP3 Gains 10.8% in H1 2019

    Michael Katz of Chief Investment Officer reports that Swedish pension fund AP3 recorded a net gain of 10.8% during the first half of 2019:Swedish pension fund AP3 reported a 10.8% return after expenses for its investment portfolio during the first ha…
    - 9 days ago, 6 Sep 19, 11:44am -
  • The World's Largest Pension Funds - 2019

    The World's Largest Pension Funds - 2019

    Amy Whyte of Institutional Investor reports that the world's largest pension funds shrank in 2018:Assets held by the 300 largest pension funds in the world fell by $81 billion during last year’s “tougher market environment,” according to new re…
    - 10 days ago, 5 Sep 19, 9:19am -
  • CalPERS's $50 Billion Bet on Equities Pays Off?

    CalPERS's $50 Billion Bet on Equities Pays Off?

    Randy Diamond of Chief Investment Officer reports on how the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) took a more than $50 billion bet with its $177 billion stock portfolio and won:The bet helped beat volatile equity markets in the…
    - 11 days ago, 4 Sep 19, 10:21am -
  • Top Funds' Activity in Q2 2019

    Top Funds' Activity in Q2 2019

    Vincent Bielski, Melissa Karsh, Brandon Kochkodin and Paul Murray of Bloomberg report the world's biggest hedge funds piled into Uber and sold Microsoft, among other big moves during the second quarter:The world’s biggest hedge funds anointed a cle…
    - 12 days ago, 3 Sep 19, 1:07pm -
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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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