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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: November, 2019
Nov 22, 2019

Automatic enrollment has been a regular theme on the podcast, in fact when I first launched the podcast I got a little worried because we seemed to hit on it in nearly every episode regardless of the topic.  Today, I am excited to welcome back Josh Dietch, a Vice President with T. Rowe Price and the group manager of Retirement Thought Leadership. Without stealing too much of his thunder, Josh and his team have just released a very interesting and thought provoking report called “Auto-Enrollment’s Long-Term Effect on Retirement Savings”.  As you will hear, some assumptions we have made about the benefits of automatic enrollment hold up, but other conclusions they come to were eye opening and have made me rethink a few things.  You can find a link to the study, this week’s bonus question and the episode transcript at 401kfridays.com/trp2019.  

Before we get started, ’tis the season to be thankful so on that note I want to thank all of my amazing guests on the podcast who have shared their time and expertise.  Also, thank you to all of our listeners.  I really appreciate the feedback, interaction on social media and sharing with friends.  As the podcast continues to grow, I look forward to a great 2020 with more new episodes, guests and topics.  

Guest Bio

Joshua Dietch is a vice president of T. Rowe Price Associates, Inc., and the group manager of Retirement Thought Leadership. Joshua joined T. Rowe Price in 2017 and is responsible for leading a team of researchers and writers who create retirement thought leadership in support of the firm's workplace retirement, intermediary, and institutional businesses. Prior to joining the firm, he held a number of senior industry roles, including head of Retirement and Institutional with Strategic Insight, managing director with Chatham Partners, director of Product Marketing and Management with ADP Retirement Services, and associate director of Institutional Markets with Cerulli Associates. In addition to his current role at T. Rowe Price, Joshua is an Executive Committee member of the Defined Contribution Institutional Investment Association and is chair of its Retirement Research Board. He earned a B.A. in history from Bates College and is a Series 7 and 66 registered representative.

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 175 prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Nov 15, 2019

When we get to tackle new topics and shed some light where there is confusion, that get’s me really excited. Regardless of what state you live in, this is timely and relevant as we tackle cannabis companies and their unique challenge of setting up 401(k) plans.  My guest, Jewell Lim Esposito an ERISA Attorney with FisherBroyles has specific hands on experience working with companies in the cannabis, hemp, cbd space.  She shares some of the challenges they face in setting up 401(k) plans for their employees, why various service providers have been hesitant to enter the space and what cannabis and other similar companies can do to provide a 401(k) plan to their employees. Also, if you are like me and are a little confused on the difference between marijuana, cannabis, hemp and cbd is, we discuss that as well.  Really great conversation and a ton of information for employers and retirement service partners who are trying to figure out what to do.  

During our conversation Jewell references supporting material from her blog All Things ERISA. You can find the link, the bonus question for this week, an episode transcript and more at 401kfridays.com/cannabis.  

Guest Bio

Jewell Lim Esposito offers decades of in-the-trench practical experience in the Employee Benefits/Tax legal world. She further sub-specializes in Title I (Department of Labor fiduciary issues) and Title II (IRS tax qualification issues) under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). Ms. Esposito's strength is understanding the business and demographics of her clients, who are headquartered across the nation. That is, with her practice being federal law, the location of the US client needing ERISA/Tax guidance on tax compliance and fiduciary duties is immaterial.

She advises in "plain English," even when the issues are complex and is able to size up exposure for C-suite executives to help them select an optimal Tax and ERISA strategy. The range of Ms. Esposito's practice extends to work in the areas of government pension plans, Executive Compensation, the Affordable Care Act, COBRA, health and welfare fringe/prevailing wage under the Service Contract Act and Davis-Bacon, and ERISA prohibited transaction exemptions.

In the area of cannabis/hemp/CBD, Ms. Esposito counsels associations, member companies, and growers/distributors/dispensaries/license holders on how Section 280E of the Internal Revenue Code affects their payroll, 401(k), health benefits, and insurance deductions. She currently chairs and coordinates her firm's efforts in showcasing all the legal services already provided to the Cannabis, Hemp, and & CBD industry and in education related to marijuana use to the general workplace.

Ms. Esposito is the editor of and contributing author to the AllThingsERISA blog.

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 175 prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

 

Nov 8, 2019

We revisit our sponsor spotlight theme on the podcast this week! Tony Tomich, the Head of Pension Investments at Farmers Insurance® shares some great perspective on the company and their retirement plan.  We had fun digging into how their plan works, how it helps with recruiting and retaining talent, how decisions are made and much more.  One major theme we dig into is the concept of retirement readiness and retirement income.  Both hot topics in their own right and really impactful to hear how Tony thinks about both. Finally, despite Farmers® being a very large company with a very large retirement plan, there are plenty of great take aways for companies and plans of all sizes.  

Before we get started, we have several exciting episodes coming up where we will welcome back some prior guests, tackle new topics and have all sorts of retirement plan fun.  If you have an idea for a topic, guest or question we should tackle on the podcast I would love to hear about it.  Just shoot me an email to feedback@401kfridays.com.  

Now, I hope you enjoy my conversation with Tony!

Guest Bio

Tony Tomich manages Farmers’ retirement investments. He has a BBA and an MPP from The College of William & Mary, in Williamsburg, VA. Tony began his career in NYC in the banking industry then moved to the internet and telecom industries in the Silicon Valley in the early 2000s. He joined 21st Century Insurance in 2004 and held multiple positions during his tenure with the organization, ranging from Treasurer & Investment Relations Officer to Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. 21st Century Insurance was purchased by AIG in 2007 and was subsequently sold to Farmers in 2009. Tony transitioned Farmers’ $3B DC plan to an open architecture, white‐label structure in 2013. Tony also manages the company’s Socially Responsible Investments portfolio and has multiple leadership roles in the space. These range from a 3 term member of the California Insurance Commissioner’s COIN Advisory Board (inaugural chairperson) to an Investment Committee member for the California Fair Plan to the Chairman of Impact Community Capital, LLC, a for‐profit entity that facilitates over $1B in SRI investments in California and beyond. Farmers Insurance provides P&C, specialty, life, commercial and other insurance and financial services products.

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 175 prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

Nov 1, 2019

The business of being in the 401(k) business has been one of our more popular themes on the podcast.  Today, should be no different.  My guest Tim Wulfekuhle, President of Northwest Plan Services and I dive into the topic of independent recordkeepers.  We start with some thoughts about different types or categories of recordkeepers, what the litmus test for an independent recordkeeper is, how in a rapidly changing environment for service providers they are positioned and what does scale mean.  Tim also shares thoughts on consolidation trends, bright shiny objects, capturing employer and employee attention when you don’t have a household brand name and what the future of the retirement business could look like.

Guest Bio

Tim Wulfekuhle is President and CEO of Northwest Plan Services, Inc. (NWPS), which is a non-producing retirement plan recordkeeping and administration firm headquartered in Seattle.  NWPS provides services to all sizes of clients, from start-ups to Fortune 100 companies.  He has over 30 years of retirement plan recordkeeping, administration and consulting experience and has been an owner of NWPS since 2002. Prior to joining NWPS, Tim was the Director of Retirement Plan Administration Services for Howard Johnson & Company. Throughout his career he has specialized in large, complex defined contribution relationships and has been the lead consultant for numerous national clients.

Tim holds a Bachelor’s in Mathematics 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 175 prior on-demand audio interviews here. Don't forget to subscribe as we release a new episode each Friday!

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