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Congress mulls major 401(k) changes

October 7, 2008

A wide range of sweeping changes to the 401(k) system were proposed Tuesday at a hearing on how the market crisis has devastated retirement savings plans. Chief among them was eliminating $80 billion in tax savings for higher-income people enrolled...

Investors clamor for ETFs in retirement account

September 28, 2008

Investors who maintain self-directed 401(k) accounts or individual retirement accounts are increasing their investments in exchange traded funds. Self-directed accounts allow investors to buy a range of equities and other securities, which sophisticated...

Galvin: Suspend penalty on 401(k) withdrawals

September 23, 2008

Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth William F. Galvin today called on Congress to temporarily suspend the 10% penalty tax on early withdrawals from 401(k)s. Mr. Galvin said many people have been forced to dip into their retirement plans,...

The cost of cashing out

September 15, 2008

If employees knew how much cashing out their plan when getting laid off or changing jobs could affect their future, maybe they would leave the plans untouched. That is the message RolloverSystems Inc. hopes to deliver with its new online calculator....

A reality check on criticisms of debit card loan programs

September 15, 2008

Debit card loan programs recently have been the focus of criticism in Washington. In addition to investor alerts issued by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. of New York and Washington and the Securities and Exchange Commission,...

Auto 401(k) plans keep participants in the game

September 8, 2008

Consider the inertia of today's 401(k) plan participants the vindication of behavioral economics. Instead of pulling out or frantically switching funds, as many as 90% of participants who were enrolled in their plans automatically — an option...

403(b) plan participants save less than 401(k) investors

September 8, 2008

Participants in 403(b) plans tend to be more conservative and set aside less money than those in 401(k) plans, according to a new study. Advisers trying to bolster their 403(b) business need to understand that employees in such plans exhibit...

401(k) debit cards are an oxymoron

September 8, 2008

Our consumer-driven society has long since sped through the intersection where discretionary spending meets available income. Concepts such as "saving for a rainy day" or "saving for retirement" seem, at best, quaint. The glare of the latest...

401(k)s tapped for loans less than in 2007

September 1, 2008

Despite reports this year that more people were borrowing from their 401(k) plans to cover daily expenses, the latest data from several plan providers show that the number of loans have fallen in some cases. However, most companies still show...

Study: Invesco AIM tops in 401(k) resources

August 5, 2008

Invesco Aim of Atlanta scored Number 1 in providing best 401(k) resources,according to a study released by Corporate Insight Inc. The firm was touted for offering management strategies for high-net-worth companies and individuals. It was also...

Labor Department proposal on 401(k) plans provokes debate

July 28, 2008

A Department of Labor proposal released last week seeking to provide the country's 65 million 401(k) participants with additional information about fund charges is stirring debate among different advocacy groups as to whether more data would...

401(k) disclosure plan completed

July 22, 2008

The Department of Labor today issued its final regulatory proposal governing 401(k) fee disclosures, a move that would affect 65 million plan participants. Under the proposal — the last of three made in the past two years to improve 401(k)...

Senators seek to cap loans from 401(k)s

July 16, 2008

Legislation setting limits on the number of loans that can be taken from 401(k) plans as well as prohibitions on 401(k) debit cards is to be introduced today by Senate Special Committee on Aging Chairman Herbert Kohl, D-Wis., and Sen. Charles...

On a 401(k) mission

July 14, 2008

In his 20 years of managing clients' 401(k) plans, Michael T. Scarborough has seen numerous examples of mistakes made by investors who don't allocate enough of their salaries to saving for retirement. Seeing investors waste the chance to build...

Women less aggressive than men in retirement saving

July 14, 2008

Women are less aggressive then men when it comes to saving for retirement, according to a new study. Released by Spectrem Group, a Chicago-based research and consulting firm, the survey showed that women defer less salary to their company retirement...

Employers take to Roth 401(k) after slow start

June 30, 2008

More than two years after its creation, the Roth 401(k) is finally gaining traction in company plans, such as those managed by The Hartford (Conn.) Financial Services Group Inc., The Vanguard Group Inc. and Merrill Lynch Retirement Group. Few...

401(k) contributions drop in troubled economy

June 19, 2008

While workers continue to put money into their 401(k) plans during the current downturn in the economy, they are investing at a lower rate, a survey released yesterday by Putnam Investments found. The 152 advisers that responded to the online...

A turbulent decade for fund industry started off well

June 9, 2008

The mutual fund industry, buffeted by volatile markets, unprecedented scandals and new competition, has had a tough time over the past 10 years. The industry started off the decade looking good. More than 130 U.S. mutual funds — a record —...

Advisers' role evolves as 401(k) plans come to dominate

June 9, 2008

During the past decade, 401(k) plans have elbowed defined benefit plans to become the primary retirement vehicle for most Americans. A decade ago, 48% of employers provided DB pension plans. Today, just 29% of employers do. As a result, 401(k)...

Complex buyout deals spur need for advice

June 9, 2008

Corporate cutbacks may provide an opportunity for financial advisers: to help employees who have lost their jobs analyze the increasingly complicated buyout packages that companies are offering. General Motors Corp., for example, recently offered...

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