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Boeing 401(k) fiduciary breach lawsuit settled

By: Robert Steyer and Barry B. Burr, Pensions & Investments

Published August 27, 2015 - 8:32am CST

Attorneys for The Boeing Co., Chicago, and participants in a Boeing 401(k) plan reached a provisional settlement in a case in which the participants had alleged breaches of fiduciary duty by plan administrators.

Newell Rubbermaid makes second lump-sum offer

By: Rob Kozlowski, Pensions & Investments

Published August 25, 2015 - 11:15am CST

Newell Rubbermaid Inc., Atlanta, announced in a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filing Monday that it will send a lump-sum offer to about 3,300 former employees who have vested in the company's pension plan but who have yet to retire.

Scripps media firm offering former workers annuities, lump sums

By: Jerry Geisel

Published August 25, 2015 - 10:04am CST

The E.W Scripps Co. is offering about 4,300 former employees the opportunity to convert their future monthly annuity into a cash lump sum or an immediate annuity payment.

U.S. Steel to freeze pension plan

By: Timothy Pollard, Pensions & Investments

Published August 24, 2015 - 9:05am CST

United States Steel Corp., Pittsburgh, will freeze benefit accruals for salaried and nonunion employees in its main defined benefit plan and two other supplemental plans, effective Dec. 31, the company said an 8-K filing Friday.

Manufacturing firm buying annuity to replace 1,900 retirees’ pensions

By: Jerry Geisel

Published August 20, 2015 - 12:54pm CST

The Lincoln Electric Co. is buying a group annuity contract to provide pension benefits to about 1,900 retirees, the Cleveland-based welding products manufacturer announced Wednesday.

Retirement benefits firm taps its president to take on CEO role

By: James Comtois, Pensions & Investments

Published August 19, 2015 - 12:36pm CST

Daniel J. Houston was named CEO of Principal Financial Group, said a company spokeswoman.

College football players' union efforts likely sacked for good

By: Shelby Livingston

Published August 19, 2015 - 9:52am CST

The National Labor Relations Board's decision to dismiss a petition by Northwestern University football players to unionize and sidestep the issue of whether they are employees thwarts the potential for similar action by other private school scholarship athletes, legal experts say.

Toshiba Corp. adds defined contribution plan to retirement benefits lineup

By: Douglas Appell, Pensions & Investments

Published August 18, 2015 - 9:43am CST

Toshiba Corp., the Tokyo-based electronics giant, announced Monday it will add a defined contribution plan to a company retirement benefits lineup that's been dominated by a defined benefit plan and a lump-sum payout provision.

DOL moving forward on retirement investment advice fiduciary rule

By: Hazel Bradford, Pensions & Investments

Published August 17, 2015 - 10:19am CST

Labor Department officials are determined to produce a new standard of fiduciary duty for anyone giving retirement investment advice, once they process concerns raised in thousands of comment letters and four days of hearings on their proposal.

Illinois high court to hear Chicago pension appeal

By: Meaghan Kilroy, Pensions & Investments

Published August 14, 2015 - 9:55am CST

The Illinois Supreme Court said Thursday it will hear the city of Chicago's appeal of last month's pension ruling on an accelerated timeline.

Weakest multiemployer pension plans continue to deteriorate

By: Hazel Bradford, Pensions & Investments

Published August 14, 2015 - 9:47am CST

Financially stable multiemployer pension funds became more stable between 2009 and 2013, while financially distressed plans got slightly worse, said new research released Thursday by the Society of Actuaries.

Fiduciary rules update hearings target retirement investments

By: Hazel Bradford, Pensions & Investments

Published August 11, 2015 - 10:16am CST

Public hearings on an updated fiduciary standard proposed by the Department of Labor got underway Monday with witnesses presenting a range of positions.

Japan's Sumitomo Life to buy U.S. insurer Symetra for $3.8 billion

Published August 11, 2015 - 9:05am CST

(Reuters) — Japan's Sumitomo Life Insurance Co. has agreed to buy U.S insurer Symetra Financial Corp. for about $3.8 billion, the latest multibillion-dollar deal in the world's largest insurance market by acquisitive Japanese companies.

Life insurer Symetra in talks to sell itself: Sources

Published August 07, 2015 - 3:07pm CST

(Reuters) — Symetra Financial Corp., a U.S. life insurance company with a market capitalization of around $2.9 billion, has been exploring the possibility of selling itself in recent months, according to people familiar with the matter.

Falling interest rates nip largest pension plans' funding levels

By: Jerry Geisel

Published August 06, 2015 - 1:08pm CST

The funded status of very large pension plans sponsored by public companies slipped in July as falling interest rates boosted the value of plan liabilities, according to a Milliman Inc. survey released Thursday.

Bill passed to aid Chicago Public Schools with pension fund

By: Meaghan Kilroy, Pensions & Investments

Published August 06, 2015 - 10:02am CST

The Illinois Senate passed a bill that would modify the way payments are made to the $10.2 billion Chicago Public School Teachers’ Pension & Retirement Fund.

Large employers' pension plan funding dips in July

By: Jerry Geisel

Published August 05, 2015 - 2:31pm CST

The funded status of pension plans sponsored by large employers dipped in July, as falling interest rates boosted the value of plan liabilities, according to a Mercer L.L.C. analysis released Wednesday.

Bill allowing surplus pension benefits to pay for retiree health care signed

By: Jerry Geisel

Published August 03, 2015 - 12:43pm CST

President Obama Friday signed legislation that extends by four years a federal law that allows employers to remove surplus assets from overfunded pension plans to pay for retiree health care benefits.

Employer's risk appetite weighs into defending ERISA class action

By: Joel Feldman

Published August 02, 2015 - 6:00am CST

When faced with an Employee Retirement Income Security Act class action, an employer's decision to fight or settle must be based on robust analysis and preparation. Joel Feldman, global co-leader of Sidley Austin L.L.P.'s financial services/consumer class action practice team, details the process.

Michigan Supreme Court upholds 2011 pension reforms

By: Christine Williamson, Pensions & Investments

Published July 30, 2015 - 2:31pm CST

In a 4-3 ruling in Lansing, Michigan, on Wednesday, state Supreme Court justices said pension reforms made by the 2011 amendment to the State Employees Retirement Act were constitutional, overturning the decision of a state court of appeals.

Employee 401(k) balances dip but hover near record levels

By: Jerry Geisel

Published July 30, 2015 - 12:02pm CST

Employees' 401(k) plan account balances dipped at the end of the second quarter of 2015 yet remain near a record high, Fidelity Investments said in an analysis released Thursday.

Centene considers snapping up Medicare Advantage plans from rivals

Published July 28, 2015 - 12:32pm CST

(Reuters) — Health insurer Centene Corp. reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit and said it would consider buying the Medicare Advantage plans its rivals are likely to divest during the current phase of consolidation in the managed care industry.

Equality Act seeks to codify LGBT rights, protections nationwide

By: Shelby Livingston

Published July 27, 2015 - 3:17pm CST

A new federal civil rights bill banning discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals could have big implications for employers.

PBGC looks to reduce reporting waivers for large plans

By: Hazel Bradford, Pensions & Investments

Published July 24, 2015 - 3:52pm CST

Fewer large defined benefit plan sponsors will be able to skip Section 4010 reporting under a rule change the PBGC will propose shortly.

Judge rules Chicago pension fix unconstitutional

By: Rob Kozlowski, Pensions & Investments

Published July 24, 2015 - 2:48pm CST

A Cook County, Illinois, circuit court judge ruled unconstitutional a pension reform law that took effect on Jan. 1 aimed at improving the funding of Chicago's pension funds for laborers and municipal workers.

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