Retirement savings legislation dies in lame-duck Congress

Proponents hope bill will be re-introduced early next year

Dec 19, 2018 @ 4:54 pm

By Mark Schoeff Jr.

Legislation that would expand the number of company-sponsored retirement plans and increase the use of annuities within them will likely die on Thursday.

Proponents of the bill, which was introduced after Thanksgiving, were hoping it would be attached to legislation to fund the government that must pass by Friday.

But on Wednesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., indicated that the chamber would consider a continuing resolution that would push off a partial government shutdown until February. The measure was to be kept free of unrelated legislation.

The House bill included tax and retirement security provisions that were part of a House bill approved earlier in the fall as well as provisions from the Retirement Enhancement and Savings Act that was introduced with bipartisan support in the Senate.

The measures would have made it easier for small businesses to band together to offer 401(k) plans to their employees, provided a safe harbor for the use of annuities in 401(k)s, enhanced portability of annuities and implemented a requirement for disclosures that translate a plan participant's account balance into an income stream.

The retirement provisions in the House bill were grouped together with tax reform that was unpalatable to Senate Democrats. Backers of the retirement-security provisions were hopeful that they would be inserted in a final funding bill during House-Senate negotiations.

"We are very disappointed that Congress did not adopt comprehensive retirement security legislation despite the strong showing of bipartisan support for it in the House and Senate," Cathy Weatherford, president and CEO of the Insured Retirement Institute, said in a statement. "We've missed an opportunity to help millions of American workers prepare for a secure retirement with improved access to income that cannot be outlived during their retirement years."

With Rep. Richard Neal, D-Mass., a strong proponent of enhancing retirement savings, taking over the chairmanship of the House Ways and Means Committee in the new Congress in January, advocates are hopeful legislation will be reintroduced.

"Some meaningful, very substantive retirement legislation will come forward in 2019," Michael Doshier, head of retirement marketing at Franklin Templeton Investments, said in a recent interview.

0
Comments

What do you think?

View comments

Recommended for you

Featured video

INTV

Financial therapy fills the gap between money and emotions

Most clients have complicated relationships with their finances, according to Rick Kahler, founder of Kahler Financial Group, and financial advisers can help.

Latest news & opinion

Finra suspends former star LPL rep who borrowed client cash

Regulator says James E. 'Jeb' Bashaw borrowed $200,000 from a client in 2013 without telling LPL.

Higher tax bills following reform surprise clients

Lower withholding and the loss of state and local deductions throw many for loop.

Centerbridge said to be in talks to buy Advisor Group

Advisor Group's independent broker-dealer network in the U.S. has more than 7,000 advisers.

The drawback of Richard Thaler's 401(k)-Social Security idea? Social Security itself

Observers think Congress would need to address Social Security's funding levels and offer enhanced protections for the concept to work

Social Security funding outlook improves slightly

Retirement reserves extended one year; disability fund by 20 years

X

Hi! Glad you're here and we hope you like all the great work we do here at InvestmentNews. But what we do is expensive and is funded in part by our sponsors. So won't you show our sponsors a little love by whitelisting investmentnews.com? It'll help us continue to serve you.

Yes, show me how to whitelist investmentnews.com

Ad blocker detected. Please whitelist us or give premium a try.

X

Subscribe and Save 60%

Premium Access
Print + Digital

Learn more
Subscribe to Print