2019 Industry News

Amid market volatility and a desire to limit the costs and downside risks associated with their pension plans, sponsors are reconsidering their approaches and talking with insurers about options they may not have previously considered.
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Steel producer AK Steel has purchased a group annuity contract from Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company to transfer approximately $615 million of its pension obligations.
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Legal & General Retirement America’s Pension Risk Transfer Monitor shows the U.S. pension risk transfer (PRT) market has remained very active throughout the first three quarters of 2019.
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The number of pension risk transfer deals, including those involving full plan terminations, is expected to rise this year, sources said. Even so, U.S. corporate pension plans are expected to transfer a total of about $25 billion in liabilities to insurance companies in 2019, consistent with last year.
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As employers wrestle with how to best mitigate the financial risks associated with sponsoring defined benefit (DB) pension plans, they should weigh the relative benefits of limiting versus eliminating those risks over time, according to a new white paper from MassMutual, “Key Decisions for De-Risking Your Pension Plan.”
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What can advisors glean from the recent popularity spike of the perennially disparaged variable annuity? Though their origins can be traced back to the Roman Empire, annuities have been historically underutilized by advisors. But that could be changing, panelists told attendees at Pershing's annual Insite conference.
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There are some striking differences between the European and American scenes when it comes to pension plan management. The more long-term and strategic approach typically embodied by private pension plans in the U.K. has allowed those plans to be early adopters of LDI and other forms of de-risking. Plans in the U.S. are playing catch-up.
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Lockheed Martin Corp. made headlines at the end of January when it announced plans to shift retiree pensions to annuities offered by a life insurer. In doing so, it joins an expanding list of companies, including FedEx Corp., Raytheon Co. and Alcoa Corp., that have transferred billions of dollars in liabilities to an insurer.
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The latest Issue Brief publication from the Employee Benefits Research Institute (EBRI) shows only a very small percentage of defined contribution (DC) and individual retirement account (IRA) balances are annuitized in a given year.
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