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401(k) Fridays Podcast

The 401(k) Fridays Podcast features a weekly conversation with an expert guest to help employers and their service partners keep up with workplace retirement plan topics and trends. Listen today, improve your retirement plan tomorrow!
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Now displaying: 2018
Dec 21, 2018

With market volatility picking up and unique things happening on almost a daily basis, my conversation today with Jeff Shulze, CFA and Investment Strategist withClear Bridge investments is both timely and full of perspective.  In classic 401(k) Fridays Podcast fashion be define a few important terms and concepts that keep popping up in the headlines and offer some perspective on how they are moving markets, the economy or both.  Jeff also offers a few points of optimism and his input on what could impact the markets in 2019 and beyond.  

Guest Bio

Jeffrey is an Investment Strategist and oversees capital market and economic research, contributing thought leadership on these topics that is frequently quoted in the financial media, including the Wall Street Journal, CNBC and CNN. He joined ClearBridge Investments in 2014 and has 13 years of investment industry experience. Prior to joining ClearBridge, Jeffrey was a Portfolio Specialist at Lord Abbett & Co., LLC. He received a BS in Finance from Rutgers University. He is a member of the CFA Institute.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

 

Dec 14, 2018

Stable value funds, what are they, how do they work and what should you consider if you have one, thinking about moving to a new one or making the switch from a money market account.  My guest, Bob Madore, a Vice President and Stable Value Portfolio Manager with T. Rowe Price answers these questions and much more.  I start out with a pretty pointed question right out of the gate that sets the tone for the rest of the conversation.  We also cover in great detail the impact of interest rates on stable value funds, why managers have been enforcing their exit provisions and clarify some confusing terms and concepts around stable value.  This is a must listen and very timely.  

Guest Bio

Bob Madore is a portfolio manager in the Fixed Income Division at T. Rowe Price. Mr. Madore has lead portfolio management responsibilities for the Stable Value Strategy as well as several large Stable Asset Management team accounts. He is a vice president of T. Rowe Price Group, Inc., T. Rowe Price Associates, Inc., and T. Rowe Price Trust Company.

Mr. Madore has 37 years of investment experience, 16 of which have been with T. Rowe Price. Prior to joining the firm in 2001, he was a senior vice president and portfolio manager at Putnam Investments. At Putnam, Mr. Madore had senior-level responsibility for its stable value business, which included Putnam's Stable Value Fund. Before joining Putnam, he was a founding partner at Fiduciary Capital Management.

Mr. Madore earned a B.A. from the University of Connecticut. He served on the Board of Directors of the Stable Value Investment Association from 2002 to 2007 and again from 2015 to present, currently serving his fourth three-year term. Mr. Madore also is an active member of its Accounting and Government Relations Committees.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Nov 16, 2018

When we get the question of “What is the best strategy for me to save for retirement” and it comes for an entrepreneur, the answer is seldom as simple as it might seem.  So, where and how do you start?   We thought it would be helpful to cover a few key concepts and then follow the progression of an entrepreneur along their journey from a “solopreneur” with an idea or inspiration for a business to experiencing some success, hiring employees, scaling and eventually selling the business and weave in along the way how different retirement plan strategies could potentially support their personal and business goals along the way. 

While I know some in our audience are not necessarily entrepreneurs, however I bet you know someone who is or maybe you might be one down the road!  Be sure to share with your friends, colleagues or social networks that might have entrepreneurs, sole proprietors or business owners who could benefit!  They can easily find the podcast on iTunes, their favorite podcast app by searching 401(k) Fridays or on the web at 401kfridays.com/Shelton.  

Finally, This episode came about because of several questions from our listeners and some recent industry conversations I was a part of.  If you have questions or a topic that you think could make for a great future episode, please shoot us an email to feedback@401kfridays.com.   

 
 

Guest Bio

Patrick is the Managing Member of Benefit Plans Plus and has more than 25 years of retirement plan industry experience in banking/trust, insurance, and third party administrative environments. He is responsible for innovating and executing the firm’s business plan. Additionally, he specializes in financial advisor relations, including 401k sales prospecting presentations, vendor searches, and fiduciary consulting.

Patrick’s reputation as a nationally recognized industry thought leader has allowed him to give back through various platforms in the media, speaking at industry events, and participating on various panelist presentations.

Additionally, Patrick serves on the American Funds, Transamerica, and Lincoln TPA leadership roundtables. He is also a board member and past President of the National Institute of Pension Administrators (NIPA).

Patrick was the first recipient of Brown Smith Wallace’s prestigious Founder’s Award, which recognizes top employees for excellence in leadership and contribu on to firm growth since 2003. 

A graduate of Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri, Patrick holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business/Committee Plan.

He has also earned the Group Benefits Associate (GBA) designation from the International Foundation of Employee Benefits Plans Certified Employee Benefit Specialist (CEBS) program. Patrick also holds a Life and Health Insurance License in the state of Missouri and is a member of the Financial Planning Association. 

As a youth, Patrick had two separate basketball coaches that were former NBA players, and he also played college basketball. Patrick is also a fan of fantasy/ SIFI. 

Nov 9, 2018

This is a pretty straightforward episode, Collective Investment Trusts, or CITs are more widely available as options for plan fiduciaries and their service providers to utilize in their investment line-ups, they are still misunderstood by many.  To help inform the conversation I have Rob Barnett, Vice President of Wilmington Trust and Head of their Institutional Retirement Sales & Service.  I am not going to spoil what the one question is that all retirement plans need to ask, but what you will hear is Rob has a great deal to say about what a Collective Investment Trust is, how they differ from mutual funds and helps dispel some common concerns and misperceptions employers and service partners have.  In the current environment which is hyper sensitive to fees, we also discuss how CITs are many times able to offer lower fees for a similar investment strategy than the comparable mutual fund. 

Guest Bio

Rob Barnett manages and provides leadership for the institutional retirement sales and service teams. Additionally, he is responsible for national and regional key account relationships. Rob is a subject matter expert in collective investment trusts, retirement advisory solutions, and trust and custody services. 

He has over a decade of industry experience, with more than half of those spent with Wilmington Trust, N.A. focused on the institutional retirement services market. 

Mr. Barnett earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Finance from Washington State University.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Nov 2, 2018

Today is a real treat, not only is this a timely episode based on current market conditions but we welcome back Rob Arnott, the Founder & Chairman of Research Affiliates who manages billions of dollars and who for the third time, shares his insights with us on the podcast.  If you have missed any of our prior conversations go check them out after you finish this one, in 2016 we talked about whether Third Pillar Investment Belong In Your 401(k) Plan, then in 2017 we talked about Avoiding the Bubble in Complacency and this year doesn’t disappoint.   With the recent volatility in the financial markets, Rob shares his thoughts on interest rates, inflation, market valuations and how diversification is a double edged sword.  We also hit on a few important topics such as smart beta, factor investing and the challenges that come with potential low investment returns in the future. I won’t steal his thunder, trust me this is a good one.  

Guest Bio

Rob Arnott is the founder and chairman of the board of Research Affiliates. He is also portfolio manager on the PIMCO All Asset and All Asset All Authority family of funds and the PIMCO RAE™ suite of funds.

Over his career, Rob has endeavored to bridge the worlds of academic theorists and financial markets, challenging conventional wisdom and searching for solutions that add value for investors. He has pioneered several unconventional portfolio strategies that are now widely applied, including tactical asset allocation, global tactical asset allocation, tax-advantaged equity management, and the Fundamental Index approach to investing. His success in doing so has resulted in a reputation as one of the world’s most provocative practitioners and respected financial analysts.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Oct 26, 2018

Maybe you’re are like me, you have heard the term blockchain before, but if someone asked you to define it, you would have a tough time.  Hopefully after you listen to my conversation with Micheal Barry, an author and President of O3 Plan Advisory Services, you will have a better idea of what blockchain is, and how it could impact 401(k) and other workplace retirement plans in the future. During our conversation we hit on distributed ledger technology and how it relates to blockchain, how providers will use blockchain in the future & the issues that could come up. We also hit on bitcoin and how it does or doesn’t relate to blockchain as they seem to be used in the same sentence often times and share some thoughts on the balance between privacy and universal data. We touch on a ton of new topics here and hopefully do it in a way that won’t leave you with a headache.  

Guest Bio

Michael P. Barry is a senior consultant at October Three and President of O3 Plan Advisory Services LLC, which provides retirement plan regulatory analysis targeted at plan sponsors and those who provide services to them. Plan Advisory Services publishes analyses of regulatory developments affecting private employer defined benefit and defined contribution plans, focusing on the challenges, opportunities, and consequences for sponsors that regulatory changes present. Mike has had over 40 years’ experience in the benefits field, in law and consulting firms, concentrating on the regulation of private employer DB and DC retirement plans.

Beginning law practice in 1976, the year that the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) became effective, Mike has worked with and studied the evolving complexities of regulation in this heavily regulated field. Before founding Plan Advisory Services in 1998, Mike was Managing Director at Bankers Trust and, before that, a New York benefits partner at LeBeouf, Lamb, Greene & McRae. He writes a regular column for PLANSPONSOR magazine (“Barry’s Pickings”). Mike blogs at moneyvstime.com, and you can follow him on Twitter @PlanAdvisorySvc.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Oct 19, 2018

From time to time we will take a side trip off the 401(k) path and explore other related topics.  Today is a great example of this where we take a minute to explore the 401(k) cousins if you will, in 403(b) and 457 plans.  My guest, Sandy Blair is a Director and CALSTRS or the California Teachers Retirement System and a board member at the NAGDCA, or the National Association of Governmental Defined Contribution Administrators.  As you will hear, while there are some similarities among governmental plans and their cousins in the corporate world, there are also some important and material differences.  We also hit on some important topics and trends we have talked about in many prior episodes such as fees, the use of auto features, fiduciary responsibility and RFPs that have some different nuances to them in the governmental plan world. Finally, Sandy also highlights the resources NAGDCA has to offer anyone who finds themselves in the world of governmental plans, specifically some highlights of next week’s National Retirement Security Week.  

Guest Bio

Ms. Blair began her CalSTRS management career in 2009 in the client outreach and guidance business area, where she was instrumental in establishing the model of CalSTRS first Member Service Center in West Sacramento. She became a field manager, overseeing centers in West Sacramento, Glendale and Santa Clara. Under Ms. Blair’s leadership, the CalSTRS defined contribution plan, Pension2®, experienced tremendous growth. It currently administers nearly $600 million in assets on behalf of more than 10,000 plan participants.

Prior to joining CalSTRS, Ms. Blair worked in the private sector in consumer banking, finance and tax preparation. She holds a Bachelor of Science in business administration and finance from California State University, Sacramento.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Oct 5, 2018

Do the largest 0.1% of workplace retirement plans in the country or the “Mega Plans” do things the same as the other 99.9% of plans? As you will hear from my guest, Charlie Nelson, CEO of Retirement & Employee Benefits of VOYA Financial, sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t. I had a few technical issues and distractions on my end to deal with right before we got started but once we got going this is a fast paced conversation where we hit on some topics things you might expect us to talk about when it comes to what mega retirement plans trends, but we also delve into on a few important topics you might not be thinking about like helping employees figure out what the next best financial decision for them is, whether the prevalence of 401(k) lawsuits in large plans influence their decision making and how some trends in the large market are actually influenced by the small market.  

Guest Bio

Charles Nelson is chief executive officer of Retirement and Employee Benefits for Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), which helps Americans plan, invest and protect their savings — to get ready to retire better. In his role, Nelson oversees Tax-Exempt and Corporate Markets and Retail Wealth Management, which comprise the company’s workplace and individual retirement businesses, including 401(k), 403(b) and 457 plans, as well as its Employee Benefits business.

Prior to joining the company, Nelson served as president of Retirement Services for Great-West Financial through September 2014 and most recently led the legacy Great-West retirement business of Empower Retirement, a business unit of Great-West Life & Annuity Insurance Company.

Nelson has more than 30 years of leadership experience in the retirement and employee benefits industry. He was named the second most influential player in the 401(k) market, according to the 401(k) Wire’s 2012 Most Influential ranking list. During his career, Nelson has managed all aspects of defined contribution businesses. He has overseen government, healthcare, nonprofit, 401(k) and FASCore institutional lines of business, while also managing recordkeeping, administration, operations, sales, products, financial results and broker-dealer services. Nelson began his career at Great-West in the employee benefits business marketing retirement plans, healthcare, stop loss and various benefit offerings.

Nelson is a graduate of Whitman College with a degree in chemistry and economics, and he was a member of the Whitman College Board of Overseers from 2008 to 2017. Nelson served as the past president of the board of directors for The SPARK Institute, a trade institute that represents the entire spectrum of defined contribution service providers. He has also been a member of the National Association of Government Defined Contribution Administrators (NAGDCA) since 1985. As a member, Nelson has contributed articles for publication, participated on a number of committees, and spoken at numerous regional and national conferences to support and assist the organization’s efforts to further the industry.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Sep 28, 2018

If you have been searching for a candid overview on the state of workplace retirement plan education in the world of automatic enrollment and changing technology, then look no further than this episode with Catherine Golladay, Senior Vice President for Participant Services & Administration at Charles Schwab.  During this fast paced conversation we hit on what is working and not working with 401(k) education, why if you are still offering pizza lunch and learns you aren’t getting the results you are hoping for and a few ideas to rethink your approach to group meetings.  We also provide a fresh update on the age old debate of education vs. advice and discuss how there is a disconnect between the retirement industry, employers and employees on the topic.  And, how could we talk about education trends without at least an honorable mention of financial wellness.  Oh, an stick around for our closing thoughts on how fee competition is also forcing employers to rethink their approach to education.  Good stuff and this episode should get you thinking.  

Guest Bio

Catherine Golladay is senior vice president of participant services and administration and has been with Charles Schwab since 1996. Golladay is responsible for plan administration, participant service centers and support teams, third party advice services, and education presenters within Schwab Retirement Plan Services.

Previously, Golladay was vice president of participant programs in Charles Schwab’s Corporate & Retirement Services business, where she was responsible for overseeing third party advice and education teams.

Golladay has been serving retirement plan clients since 1990 and has held management positions in compliance, client services, communication consulting, and participant service centers. Prior to joining Charles Schwab, Golladay was vice president of ERISA compliance at Key Bank. Before that she served as a Certified Public Accountant at S.R. Snodgrass and Co., LPA.

She is a Certified Public Accountant and a qualified 401(k) administrator (QKA). She also holds FINRA Series 7, 9/10, 24, 63, and 66 registrations.

Golladay earned a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from the University of Akron. She also has a Master of Business Administration degree from the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Sep 21, 2018

Based on the recent IRS private letter ruling I though this would be a good episode from the archives to repost. While this episode is almost two years old, my guest, Tony Aguilar, who at the time was the co-founder and CEO of Student Loan Genius could not be more current and relevant about the realities and challenges that come with student debt. What you might be surprised to hear is that nearly half of your workforce could be impacted and its not just a millennial thing!  Tony also does a nice job framing how employers have been adding solutions to help employees with their student loan debt as part of their wellness programs and how some employers are even making contributions towards employee student loans as a recruiting and retention tool!  What is the tie in to retirement you ask, well it wouldn’t be the 401(k) Fridays podcast if we didn’t address that at some point.  As you will hear, paying off debt has an impact on your employees’ ability to save for retirement, however I was pretty excited to learn about some of the new tools and resources employers may offer to help to tackle both loan repayments and retirement savings!

Guest Bio

Tony Aguilar is co-founder and CEO of Student Loan Genius, Austin-based inventor of the first complete student loan employer benefits solution. Today he uses his years of experience as a financial advisor and founder of Amiti Advising and Campus Slice to help crush America’s $1.3 trillion student loan problem. Featured in the Wall Street Journal, Money Magazine, and on CNN, his commitment to helping professionals get ahead and live a life free from debt is the common thread in all of his work. When he’s not leading the team at Student Loan Genius, Tony is spending time with his 3-year old daughter. He can also be found guest lecturing at the University of Texas and Concordia University on entrepreneurship and personal finance, serving as Chairman of Concordia University’s Emerging Leaders Advisory Board, or mentoring fellow social entrepreneurs and startups.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Sep 14, 2018

This episode is a perfect example of one where I get to use the podcast as my own research lab and learn right along side of you.  Environmental, Social & Governance investments, or ESG or is it ES&G strategies, is a new topic here on the podcast and one that i have been looking forward to exploring.  Their popularity seems to have ebbed and flowed in the 401(k) investment world, but as a strategy it is defiantly  here to stay.  My guest, Sean Kenney, A CFA and Managing Director for MFS Investment Management is, as you will hear, incredibly knowledgable and passionate about all things ESG. We hit on a few familiar themes such as whether the decision to add an ESG strategy or strategies to your workplace retirement plan should be done by evaluating different products or through a broader process. We also discuss who in your population ESG might appeal to, the fiduciary and regulatory implications for offering ESG investments in your plan and close with some solid takeaways and next steps for employers.  

Guest Bio

Sean M. Kenney, CFA, is a managing director and head of Defined Contribution at MFS Investment Management® (MFS®). He leads a team focused on selling MFS investment products through retirement plans, advisors, consultants and recording keeping platforms.

Sean joined MFS in 2004, first working in the Retirement Services Division. He subsequently held various distribution roles within the firm. From 2008 to 2017, he served as a managing director of Institutional Sales. In this role, he was responsible for leading the firm’s sales efforts involving institutional investors in the eastern United States.

Sean graduated magna cum laude from Assumption College with a major in economics. He earned an MBA from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation and is actively involved in numerous industry groups.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Sep 7, 2018

 

Guest Bio

Kevin Murphy is a senior vice president and Head of the Defined Contribution Strategic Accounts team for Franklin Templeton's US Investment-Only division. He is responsible for directing and expanding sales of mutual funds and sub-advised portfolio products in employer-sponsored retirement plans. In addition to leading the team of Strategic Account Managers, his primary focus is on mid-market advisory firms with a national footprint, and serves as the primary liaison with these firms at their home offices. Mr. Murphy also leads the firm's Health Savings Account (HSA) initiative. 

Mr. Murphy's primary objective is to help more Americans achieve optimal retirement outcomes. He approaches this by offering thought leadership in retirement plan services and investments and working diligently as a key business partner to retirement plan advisory firms, consultants and retirement plan sponsors. His expertise spans qualified plans, investments, current industry trends and Franklin Templeton products and services. 

Mr. Murphy began his career in the financial services industry in 1999 and joined Franklin Templeton Investments in 2011. Prior to that, he was a regional vice president on Columbia Management's Defined Contribution Investment Only team. He also served as vice president and regional sales director of corporate retirement plans at Wachovia Retirement Services. 

Mr. Murphy holds a B.Sc. in Agriculture from the University of Delaware. He was selected by National Association of Plan Advisors (NAPA) for its list of the Top 100 Defined Contribution Wholesalers in the industry in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017. Among his sales accolades, Mr. Murphy was named Franklin Templeton's Investment-Only Specialist of the year in 2012 and 2014. Kevin, his wife Shannon and their four children reside in Kinnelon, NJ. He is a FINRA registered representative. 

Aug 24, 2018

We have talked about financial wellness on the podcast before, but not like this. My conversation today with Bill Harmon, President of Retirement Corporate Markets for Voya Financial illustrates how a thoughtful approach to financial wellness can help you become the employer of choice in your market and make a meaningful difference in the battle to attract and retain key talent. As you will hear, Bill shares a very personal and emotional story about how he found comfort in leaving his prior employer of nearly 30 years to join Voya in large part due to their approach in one key area of wellness.  He also hits on a few other high value low cost wellness strategies for your consideration.  Despite this being the most heartfelt episode I have done, there is a surprising amount of concrete and relevant data as well.  

Guest Bio

William Harmon is president of Retirement Corporate Markets for Voya Financial.

In his role, Harmon oversees all aspects of the Corporate 401(k) market, including sales, relationship management, strategy and profitable growth for all segments of the market — from small- and mid-sized companies to some of the nation’s largest corporate employers. He and his team support Voya Retirement’s efforts to deliver next-generation customer experiences and solutions that drive positive retirement outcomes.

Harmon is a member of CEO of Retirement Charlie Nelson's leadership team, as well as Voya's Operating Committee.

Most recently, Harmon served as senior vice president, Core Markets, for Empower Retirement, where he was responsible for the segment’s overall success. During his 29-year tenure at Empower, the U.S. retirement business of Great-West Lifeco, he contributed to significant growth in plan sales, assets and earnings.

For 11 years, including five as president, Harmon served on the board of Adam’s Camp, a group of non- profit organizations providing a variety of intensive, personalized, and integrated therapeutic programs for children with special needs and their families. He has also been closely involved with organizations supporting the special needs community including Special Olympics and Rocky Mountain Down Syndrome Association.

Harmon holds a bachelor’s degree in Marketing from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Aug 17, 2018

This episode was a real treat for me and hopefully will be for you. I am excited share my conversation with The Honorable Phyllis Borzi, the former Assistant Secretary of Labor for the Employee Benefits Security Administration under President Obama.  We covered a range of topics that regardless of your involvement with workplace retirement plans should keep your interest. I am also proud that while we talked about her time at the DOL, the majority of our focus was looking forward and exploring how her experience can help employers today and those who want to shape the future of the workplace retirement system.  We also hit on two pieces of unfinished business Phyllis wished she had more time to work on while she was at the DOL, what the Perez Principle is and whether employers also suffer from choice overload in retirement plans.  Finally, we cover a few topics near and dear to her heart and what she thinks of some of the current retirement proposals in front of congress today to reform the retirement system.  Be prepared for some candid insight and some very different perspective than frankly what I expected going into the conversation.  And don't miss our call to action at the end.  

Guest Bio:

The Honorable Phyllis C. Borzi served as the Assistant Secretary of Labor for the Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), an agency that oversees approximately 700,000 private-sector retirement plans, approximately 2.3 million group health plans, and a similar number of other welfare benefit plans that provide benefits to approximately 150 million Americans. As agency head, she oversaw the administration, regulation and enforcement of Title I of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA). 

Among her other duties as Assistant Secretary of Labor, she represented the Department of Labor in overseeing implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) insurance market reforms and other ACA rules affecting employer-sponsored group health plans and she was instrumental in the development of various pension regulations, including the Department’s rule requiring individuals providing financial advice to plan sponsors and retirement investors to act as ERISA fiduciaries.

Ms. Borzi also represented the Secretary of Labor in the Secretary’s role as statutory trustee for the Social Security (OASDI) and Medicare Trust Funds and in the Secretary’s capacity as chair of the Board of the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC).

Previously, Ms. Borzi was a research professor in the Department of Health Policy at George Washington University Medical Center's School of Public Health and Health Services. In that position, she was involved in research and policy analysis involving employee benefit plans, the uninsured, managed care, and legal barriers to the development of health information technology. In addition, she was of counsel with the Washington, D.C. law firm of O'Donoghue & O'Donoghue LLP, specializing in ERISA and other legal issues affecting employee benefit plans, including pensions and retirement savings, health plans, and discrimination based on age or disability.

From 1979 to 1995, Ms. Borzi served as pension and employee benefit counsel for the U.S. House of Representatives, Subcommittee on Labor-Management Relations of the Committee on Education and Labor. In 1993, she served on working groups dealing with insurance reform, workers' compensation and employer coverage in connection with the Clinton Task Force on Health Care Reform.

Ms. Borzi is a charter member and former President of the American College of Employee Benefit Counsel and served on its Board of Governors from 2000-2008; former member and former co-chair of the Advisory Board of the BNA Pension & Benefits Reporter; former member of the Advisory Committee of the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation; and former member of the Advisory Board of the Pension Research Council, The Wharton School, The University of Pennsylvania; and former member of the Board of the Women's Institute for a Secure Retirement (WISER). In 2007, she was appointed by the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio and served as a public member of the Administrative Committee for the Goodyear retiree health trust until 2009. 

Ms. Borzi has published numerous articles on ERISA, health care law and policy and retirement security issues and has been a frequent speaker to legal, professional, business, consumer and state and local governmental organizations both in the United States and internationally. An active member of the American Bar Association, Borzi is the former chair of the ABA's Joint Committee on Employee Benefits. She holds a Master of Arts degree in English from Syracuse University and a J.D. from Catholic University Law School, where she was editor-in-chief of the law review. Ms. Borzi currently is a member of the Board of Visitors of the Catholic University Law School.  She is a member of the District of Columbia Bar and is admitted to practice before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court.

 

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Aug 10, 2018

Maybe I'm a little early with the football analogy, but it seemed to fit. Today, we welcome back Tom Clark, an ERISA Attorney and Partner at The Wagner Law Group as we discuss five 401(k) fiduciary fumbles we see plan sponsors make.  As a return guest who I have gotten to know  pretty well, we have a little fun and share some insight along the way. Whether it is clarifying the importance of fiduciary analysis vs. process, mistakes to avoid when "outsourcing" fiduciary responsibility, or the inevitable fumbles around fees.  Oh, and Tom gives us his feedback from the front lines as to whether the tide has been turning in favor of employers or plaintiffs in ERISA litigation.   

Guest Bio

Tom Clark is a partner at The Wagner Law Group, a law firm specializing in ERISA & Employee Benefits. He leads the firm’s St. Louis office. His expertise encompasses all aspects of employee benefits programs, including the design, implementation and compliance of retirement plans, health and welfare plans, and executive and incentive compensation arrangements.  He also has a robust practice assisting covered service providers in meeting their ERISA compliance needs.  Tom’s vast litigation experience complements the firm’s strong and growing ERISA and employment litigation department and has included work on landmark ERISA cases involving complicated ERISA fiduciary duty issues, such as Tibble v. Edison.

Tom has been quoted extensively as an ERISA and employee benefits expert by outlets such as Reuters, the Associated Press, Bloomberg, and Forbes.   He teaches ERISA fiduciary law as an Adjunct Professor at The Washington University in St. Louis School of Law, his alma mater. He is also a co-author of the forthcoming second edition of ERISA: Principles of Employee Benefits Law, the only treatise of its kind that provides an overview of the regulation of employee benefit plans by highlighting the central principles and competing policies of employee benefits law in a compact and accessible format for a broad audience of readers.

Tom earned his JD and LL.M. degrees from Washington University School of Law in St. Louis, MO.  He is a member of the bar in Missouri and Illinois.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Aug 3, 2018

Welcome back to new episodes of the 401(k) Fridays Podcast! After taking a little hiatus in July I am really excited about what we have in store for the remained of the year.  Also, during our little break I updated the podcast intro, if you skipped it go back and give it a quick listen.  We also updated the website, thank you Jonah and Annie at Puddlecreative. Go to 401kfridays.com and check that out, and while you are there don’t forget to subscribe to our email list.  All done with housekeeping, now onto the episode at hand.  

 

Its always fun to welcome back a returning guest.  Jeff Bograd was one of my favorite guests from last year, if you haven’t listened to his episode scroll down on your podcast app and look for Retirement Plan Design The Next Frontier it is a good one.  Today, we tackle some thoughts for employers as they plan for 2019.  Recent tax reform brought about a few changes to 401(k) plans that everyone should be aware of.  Also, we hit on a few plan design options to think about as you consider changes to your plan for next year.  And, since wellness is such a popular topic we hit on a few ideas to dip your tow in the water on financial wellness with simple enhancements to your retirement plan.  

Guest Bio

Jeff Bograd is the Vice President, Senior Retirement Plan Consultant for John Hancock Retirement Plan Services and has been with the company for more than 28 years. In this role, Jeff serves as a technical resource to John Hancock’s client service and sales teams, plan sponsors and financial advisors on complex compliance matters and optimal plan design. He provides ERISA and fiduciary training classes to John Hancock employees, plan sponsors and financial advisors and speaks at industry conferences on legislative and regulatory matters and achieving financial independence through plan design. Prior to his current role, Jeff managed the ERISA Consulting Group, served as an ERISA Consultant and managed the ERISA Compliance Department, responsible for all compliance testing, Forms 5500, and IRS and DOL plan audits. Jeff received a B.A. in Economics, cum laude, from Middlebury College. In addition, he is a Registered Representative and maintains his FINRA Series 6 and 63 registrations. Outside of work, Jeff enjoys reading about behavioral economics and personal finance, and playing and coaching lacrosse.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

 

 

Jun 29, 2018

We are taking a brief summer hiatus. Enjoy this episode from the archives. New episodes will resume again in August. Enjoy!

This episode is fresh out of the 401(k) Fridays Podcast experiment lab.  Today my guest JD Carlson, the President & CEO of the legendary Third Party Administration firm Plan Design Consultants and Host of the Retireholi(k)s show we poke a little bit of fun with 401(k) speak.  Each of us took the time to prepare a few statements that are full of retirement plan terms, or maybe not, and then put the other person on the spot to determine if the statement is Jargon, Gibberish, or Jumbled.  We had a lot of fun recording this but want to make sure we weren’t the only ones.  Please share your feedback on whether this was entertaining, informative or both or neither.  Shoot us an email to feedback@401kfridays.com or leave a comment on LinkedIn to me, Rick Unser or JD Carlson.  If the feedback we get is encouraging, we will tackle some additional retirement plan related topics using this format with future guests.  The fate of Jargon, Gibberish or Jumbled  is in your hands!

We also have another first with this episode, we have video!  If you want to check that out, go to YouTube and search Plan Design Consultants.  Or go to www.401kfridays.com/jgjand I will have a link towards the bottom of the page.    

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Jun 22, 2018

Employers consistently want to know what other employers are doing in their 401(k) plan. In this episode we drill into the decisions employers are making about plan design, investment options, fiduciary process and employee retirement outcomes. The heavy lifting is done by Derek Wallen, a SVP at Fidelity and architect of their annual Plan Sponsor Attitudes Survey.  Derek does a nice job highlighting the key finds of this years survey which is hot off the presses and comparing result to prior years.  He also does all of this in a way that is easy to understand and compare contrast what is going on in your plan. 

If you would like a copy of the survey go to 401kfridays.com/wallen and we will have a link. Or, if you are an email subscriber we will send that out to you. If you are not an email suscriber, go to 401kfrisays.com/subscribe today to get that taken care of.  

Finally, we are going to take a little summer hiatus so this will be the last new episode for a few weeks. Don’t forget we have over 120 episodes in the archives you can explore and we will repost a few prior episodes while we are on break.  When we come back with new episodes we will also have a fancy new website and a few other surprises to be sure to check it out!

Guest Bio

Derek Wallen is senior vice president and head of Defined Contribution Investment Only (DCIO) Sales at Fidelity Institutional Asset ManagementSM (FIAMSM), Fidelity Investments’ distribution and client service organizationdedicated to meeting the needs of consultants and institutional investors, such as defined benefit and defined contribution plans, endowments, and financial advisors.

In this role, Mr. Wallen oversees the DCIO team distributing Fidelity Investment asset management capabilities through advisors, advisory firms, and record keepers focused on serving the small and mid-sized defined contribution marketplace.

Prior to assuming his current position in 2011, Mr. Wallen managed institutional insurance sales for the eastern region of the United States. He joined Fidelity in 1991 as a sales executive responsible for the Chicago, New York, and Boston marketplaces.

Mr. Wallen graduated from Villanova University. He has also completed the Leadership Development Program at the Center for Creative Leadership and the Securities Industry Institute.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

 

Jun 15, 2018

Its getting to be that time of year again, no not that time of year, its time to plan for benefits open enrollment. Over the last several years all the changes and activity in health plans has grabbed the headlines and the lions share of the focus of employee meetings. This year, and going forward where does the 401(k) plan fit?

To shed some light on this I am happy to have Peg Knox who today is the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of DCIIA. But not so long ago she was the global retirement plans manager at Bechtel Global Corporation, where she worked to generate and implement new ideas for Bechtel retirement plans to enhance retirement security for its employees. She shares some great thoughts right out of the gate on 401(k) plans and open enrollment. We also delve into the hot topics of financial wellness, whether HSAs should be tied to health plans or retirement plans and much more.

Guest Bio

Peg Knox is Chief Operating Officer (COO) of DCIIA. Prior to joining DCIIA, she was the global retirement plans manager at Bechtel Global Corporation, where she worked to generate and implement new ideas for Bechtel retirement plans to enhance retirement security for its employees. Previously she had served as Bechtel’s treasurer, where she ensured efficient global treasury operations including cash management and investments, debt and credit lines, foreign exchange services and other treasury functions to support the company's business lines. Peg has an MBA from Saint Mary’s College and is based in San Francisco.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Jun 8, 2018

There has been vast improvement by retirement plan fiduciaries when it comes to reviewing fees and investments.  We even see more retirement plan committee who check the box on other important fiduciary tasks. But does that mean they have a good governance process?  With that said, what is fiduciary governance, what does good governance look like and can you be a top notch fiduciary but leave yourself exposed to risk with poor governance?

We tackle this and more today in my conversation with Andy Larson, Director of Retirement Education at the Retirement Leaning Center.  Right out of the gate Andy shares what he feels the key missing ingredient to good governance is. We also tackle many common questions we get from employers about governance such as who should be on a fiduciary committee, how often should you meet and what should you address every year. Stay tuned because some answers you have heard in the past have been updated based on what we have learned from ERISA litigation and other trends.  You will also here that Andy shares my love for analogies, and there are some good ones!

Guest Bio

With 35 years of experience in the financial services industry, Andy is a respected authority, frequent lecturer and author on industry topics. Andy’s background includes managing and consulting with major recordkeeping platforms, extensive product design for plan sponsors and advanced sales support for intermediaries who work with plans.

As a retirement industry executive, he ran the recordkeeping and consulting practice for Universal Pensions, Inc. (UPI), and headed the BISYS Corporate University. He has served as an adjunct professor for the Central Lakes College system in Minnesota, and provides expert witness services on numerous industry topics. Andy is co-author of RLC’s book, Retirement Resource Guide:  Essential ERISA Education & Best Practices for Financial Advisors. He is a graduate of the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota, and maintains a Certified Pension Consultant (CPC) designation from the American Society of Pension Professionals and Actuaries.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Jun 1, 2018

Believe it or not, but it has been over six months since we have tackled about financial wellness on the podcast. Today, Chris Whitlow, the Founder & CEO of Edukate, address the red hot topic. In our conversation today we tackle an interesting thought on financial wellness, despite nearly everyone talking about it, are employers actually embracing it? We share some thoughts on that along with four steps to start an effective financial wellness program, if financial wellness is a product or process, how to evaluate VOI & ROI and thoughts for employers to knock down silos between their physical wellness and financial wellness programs and embrace a program based on overall wellbeing.  Chris and I also had a few good laughs as he picked away at my compound questions.

Guest Bio

Chris Whitlow is the founder and CEO of Edukate, a workplace financial wellness provider on a mission to give every person access to expert financial guidance. Chris works with the Edukate team to solve problems that ease the financial stress most Americans experience each day. Using cutting edge technology, Edukate helps employers provide the best financial wellness benefits, thus helping employees manage their financial stress, increase their productivity, and live happier, healthier lives.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

 

May 25, 2018

In case you hadn’t noticed, Target Date Funds (TDFs) are kind of a big deal in workplace retirement plans.  My guest, Jeff Holt, a Director of Multiasset Strategies at Morningstar and one of the authors of their 10th annual Target Date Landscape report cites their use as default funds in retirement plans as one of the key reasons they hit $1 Trillion dollars in assets in 2017. 

 

During our conversation today, we discuss the significance of that accomplishment and hit a few other highlights including thoughts on the flood of money into “passive” target date funds, how TDFs are actually performing, whether you can glean useful information by evaluating the underlying holdings in TDFs and how the competitive environment in TDFs is affecting the industry.  Also, don’t miss our discussion on a newer statistic Morningstar has developed comparing the cost of a target date fund with the percent of that fund that is index based.  

 

Whether you are TDF novice or expert, there is something here for you.  If you feel like we missed something on TDFs, let me know and we can tackle it on a future episode.  Shoot me an email to feedback@401kfridays.com.

Guest Bio

Jeff Holt, CFA, is director of multiasset and alternative strategies for Morningstar Research Services LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Morningstar, Inc. He has covered target-date funds and other multiasset funds from various asset managers.   

 

Before joining Morningstar in 2014, Holt spent nearly nine years at Jeffrey Slocum & Associates (since acquired by Pavillion Financial), where he was responsible for investment research to support the firm’s defined-contribution practice. He covered target-date funds, stable value funds, and other asset classes specific to defined-contribution clients.

 

Holt holds a bachelor’s degree in management, with a concentration in corporate finance, from Brigham Young University. He also holds the Chartered Financial Analyst® designation. 

 

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

May 18, 2018

With the continued focus on fees in workplace retirement plans I thought it might be good to pivot the conversation and tackle some of the realities around the what actually goes into running a successful and compliant plan.  To add some muscle to the conversation I have Ed Murphy, President of Empower Retirement.  Ed and his team are responsible for over 30,000 of thousands of retirement plans and over 8 million participants.  Our conversation ranges from what it takes to keep the proverbial trains running on time, why scale is important in retirement services, how they predict where the puck is going to allocate discretionary spending, and much more.  I learned a lot during our conversation and hopefully this will provide you with some helpful perspective when you face the inevitable questions about your retirement plan fees.  

 

Before we get started, we have some exciting new episodes in store where tackle where 401(k) fits in your open enrollment strategy, is financial wellness working, trends in target date funds, input on employer attitudes about retirement plans and much more.  However, we definitely want your feedback on other topics to pursue. When you have a suggestion for a guest or topic please just shoot us an email to feedback@401kfridays.com.  We will take it from there.  

 

Guest Bio

Edmund (Ed) Murphy provides leadership and strategic direction for Empower Retirement’s 5,000 associates.1 He directs all defined contribution, defined benefit, institutional and IRA markets. He also oversees all sales, marketing and global operations.

Ed brings 30 years of broad industry experience to his role. Before his 2014 appointment as President of Empower, he had served as Managing Director of the Defined Contribution and Investment Only business at Putnam Investments since 2009. He joined the firm’s operating committee in 2011.

Previously, Ed held executive leadership roles for 17 years at Fidelity Investments in its institutional, private equity and retail businesses. He also served as President and CEO of Veritude, LLC, as well as a board member of BostonCoach, Advisor Technology Services, Seaport Hotel, World Trade Center and several other Fidelity-owned businesses. Earlier, he spent six years at Merrill Lynch.

Ed has written articles on retirement-related matters and has testified in Washington, D.C., before the House Committee on Ways and Means. He has also testified before the Department of Labor, the Treasury Department and the IRS. He speaks on topics ranging from investment advice to lifetime income solutions for retirees.

Ed is a board member of the Employee Benefit Research Institute, Cristo Rey School, Boston College Wall Street Council and the New England Council. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Boston College. Ed is a graduate of the General Manager Program at Harvard Business School.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

May 11, 2018

The DOL Fiduciary Rule died, or did it?  Maybe its coming back to life in another form, through another government agency or even the states will take a crack at it.  What should employers know? How will this impact employees?  In this timely and action packed episode I am excited to have Fred Reish, ERISA Attorney extraordinaire with Drinker Biddle and the closest follower I know of the long and winding path of the fiduciary rule.  For many, Fred requires no introduction.  If you are not familiar Fred is perennially listed as one of the most influential individuals in the retirement industry, he has been named one of the “Legends” in the development of retirement plan by PLANSPONSOR Magazine and given multiple lifetime achievement awards and other honors.  On top of that, Fred is a great guy with an easy to follow communication style as he shares his insights today.  If you want to learn more about Fred or subscribe to his blog that we reference today you can find him at fredreish.com

As a quick aside, I worked in several questions we got from listeners who are email subscribers or follow me on LinkedIn.  If you want an opportunity to submit questions to future guests go to 401kfridays.com/subscribe to get connected.  Finally, Fred was an inspiration for me to start the podcast.  More on that in my wrap-up if you are interested.  

Guest Bio

Fred Reish is an ERISA attorney whose practice focuses on fiduciary responsibility, prohibited transactions and plan qualification and operational issues. He has been recognized as one of the “Legends” of the retirement industry by both PlanAdviser magazine and PlanSponsor magazine. Fred has received awards for: the 401(k) Industry’s Most Influential Person by 401kWire; one of RIABiz’s 10 most influential individuals in the 401(k) industry affecting RIAs; the Commissioner’s Award and the District Director’s Award by the IRS; the Eidson Founder’s Award by the American Society of Professionals & Actuaries (ASPPA); the Institutional Investor and the PlanSponsor magazine Lifetime Achievement Awards; and the ASPPA/Morningstar 401(k) Leadership Award. He has also received the Arizona State University Alumni Service Award. Fred has written more than 350 articles and four books about retirement plans, including a monthly column on 401(k) fiduciary issues for PlanSponsor magazine. Fred Co-Chaired the IRS Los Angeles Benefits Conference for over 10 years, served as a founding Co-Chair of the ASPPA 401(k) Summit, and has served on the Steering Committee for the DOL National Conference.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

May 4, 2018

With so much focus on employee engagement and financial wellness, what happens when you actually get your employees attention and they use the tools they are provided to help calculate what they need to do to have a successful retirement, and they are given bad information? My guest today, Tom Kmak, CEO of Fiduciary Benchmarks has thought a great deal about it, so much so that I think he even admitted talking to retirement calculators, but in all seriousness he has some timely input and food for thought for employers.  This is the third time I have had Tom on the podcast and love when he shares his perspective from over 30 years in the retirement industry which includes running JP Morgan’s retirement business and founding Fiduciary Benchmarks a decade ago.  When Tom invests a lot of time and gets passionate about something, that usually means its important and things will change in the future.  

Guest Bio

CEO and co-founder of Fiduciary Benchmarks, 2007 to current. Fiduciary Benchmarks (FBi) is a premier benchmarking service for defined contribution plans that is designed to help fiduciaries determine whether the fees they are paying to their service providers are reasonable in light of the value being received. Through their construction and presentation, FBi’s patented methodology and reports give plan decision makers the context necessary to improve decisions and positively affect the measures of long-term plan success. FBi reports are available primarily through advisor/consultants, recordkeepers, TPAs and other plan service providers.

Prior to founding FBi, Tom Started the JPMorgan Retirement Plan Services business in 1990 with American Century. Upon leaving in October 2007, that business employed 1,100 people serving 200 large plan sponsors with over 1.5 million participants and more than $115 billion in assets.

During his 18 years with Retirement Plan Services, the company initiated numerous industry firsts including no blackout conversions and the innovative employee education program, Audience ofOne. Tom also served on the Executive Committee for JPMorgan’s asset management business.

Named by Ingram’s magazine as one of Kansas City’s inaugural class of “Forty most influential people under Forty,” Tom is a recognized expert in the retirement services industry who has been afeatured speaker at various conferences and has published articles in some of the most well-known periodicals in the industry.

Graduated Phi Beta Kappa from DePauw University with B.A. degrees in Economics and Computational Mathematics. First graduate of Management Fellows Program and 3 year letterman in inter-collegiate basketball.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Struggling with a fiduciary issue, looking for strategies to improve employee retirement outcomes or curious about the impact of current events on your retirement plan? We've had conversations with retirement industry leaders to address these and other relevant topics! You can easily explore over one hundred prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

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