Archive for August, 2012

Fixing 401(k) Plans

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will be having another free phone forum on September 7, 2012.  Sign up can be accessed through the announcement on the IFEBP website located at http://www.ifebp.org/News/Regulatory+Updates/IRS+Sept+7+PhoneForum.htm. With the redesigned IRS website, I was unable to find the link through their site.  If I receive information on an updated link (the last phone forum shown was in June as of today), I will post the information next week.  A couple of interesting notes about signing up for the phone forum.  If you want credit, you will need to provide your PTIN.  In addition, they have a section for suggested future phone forums.  A great opportunity to ask the IRS to address issues of concern to you.

Have a Happy and Safe Labor Day weekend!

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day!   Please be sure to sign up for my blog and follow me on twitter.

August 31, 2012 at 6:29 pm Leave a comment

Why Start a Retirement Plan

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has a great flyer located on their website at http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-tege/savings_retirement.pdf.  The page describes five great reasons to start a retirement plan:  having a nest egg in retirement, tax savings, taking advantage of compound interest, retaining human capital, and attracting talent.  It is wonderful to see the IRS encouraging employers to set up new plans.  Likewise, I love that they point out that there is a retirement plan type for every employer!

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day!   Please be sure to sign up for my blog and follow me on twitter.

I am not selling my own or any one else’s TPA services through this blog.

August 30, 2012 at 10:32 pm Leave a comment

Selecting a Third Party Administrator (TPA) for Retirement Plan – Part II

As a plan sponsor, there are many responsibilities that must be performed regarding your retirement plan.  When seeking out a third party administrator (TPA) or other service provider, what are plan sponsors looking for?  Are they looking for only the lowest fee provider?   As plan sponsors, they are responsible for making an assessment regarding the reasonableness of fees and continuing to monitor plan service providers.  However, are they weighing costs over other attributes?  For example, it is important to review the services the provider will perform.  Services can vary dramatically across the industry.  Some providers might perform only compliance testing and reporting.  Others may include document services.  Fees are only a part of the puzzle.

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day!   Please be sure to sign up for my blog and follow me on twitter.

I am not selling my own or any one else’s TPA services through this blog.

August 29, 2012 at 7:43 pm Leave a comment

401(k) Plan Matches are Up

Businessweek.com has an article by Dave Carpenter regarding the trend in retirement plan matches located at http://www.businessweek.com/ap/2012-08-27/study-finds-401k-matches-back-at-pre-crisis-level.  The article indicates that 5% more employers are offering match in 2011 compared to 2009.  It does not indicate if they are offering larger amounts, but more employers does seem to be a good trend.

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day!   Please be sure to subscribe to my blog and follow me on twitter @ChristineGurney.

August 28, 2012 at 7:49 pm Leave a comment

Dept of Labor 401(k) Fee Webcast

The Department of Labor (DOL) is going to be holding a webcast on September 13th regarding fee disclosures.  Sign up is located at http://mp163422.cdn.mediaplatform.com/163422/wc/mp/4000/15208/15210/18164/Lobby/default.htm. Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis and Assistant Secretary Phyllis Borzi of the Employee Benefits Security Administration are going to be discussing the 401(k) plan fee disclosures, and this is a great educational tool to make plan sponsors and plan participants aware of.  Hopefully, they will post a copy to the DOL website afterwards for those who cannot make it.

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day!   Please be sure to sign up for my blog and follow me on twitter.

August 27, 2012 at 5:01 pm Leave a comment

My Book is Now Available on Amazon!

As an update to yesterday’s post, my book is now also available on Amazon at

http://www.amazon.com/Short-Guide-Finding-Value-Administrator/dp/147912821X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1345866891&sr=8-1&keywords=christine+gurney-hsiung.

Have a great weekend!

August 25, 2012 at 10:37 am Leave a comment

How to Select a TPA for Your Retirement Plan

As a plan sponsor, there are many responsibilities that must be performed regarding your retirement plan.  Among the most important duties is selecting service providers.  How do you select a third party administrator (TPA)?  What items should a plan sponsor be looking at?   How can you gauge the credentials and skills of a potential TPA?

I am proud to announce that my book, A Short Guide to Finding a High Value, Low Fee Third Party Administrator (TPA) for Your Retirement Plan, is now available at https://www.createspace.com/3964647.  My goal is to help plan sponsors make the best decision they can when selecting a  TPA.  I understand how difficult a decision this can be when you do not know what skills and credentials to look for.  I have created this book to ease the process and enable plan sponsors to make good choices through my insights from working in the industry.

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day!   Please be sure to sign up for my blog and follow me on twitter.

I am not selling my own or any one else’s TPA services through this blog or my book.

August 24, 2012 at 9:57 am 1 comment

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Christine Gurney

A pension professional who shares her thoughts and ideas about the pension world for industry members and anyone else interested.

@ChristineGurney

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