Monday, April 27, 2020

SBS participant education services: Timely help from a safe distance

The current pandemic environment proves how unpredictable this world can be throughout a person’s career and life. That’s why the value of Strategic Benefit Services’ participant education services cannot be overstated: Being there for our clients’ employees is of paramount importance and a key measure of our success. In addition to our plan level consulting services, we offer a dedicated team of highly trained and experienced educators to assist retirement plan participants. Our salaried team members educate employees, with no conflict of interest.

Thursday, April 16, 2020

In Fed We Trust

In March, the market’s “fear gauge,” the VIX, reached 82.7, the highest close in its 30-year history. Daily moves in the S&P 500 averaged +/-5.0% and its 12.0% decline on March 16 was the worst day for the index since Black Monday in 1987. The New York Stock Exchange on March 23 closed the physical trading floor for the first time in its history and moved fully to electronic trading.

As headlines focused on the equity markets, the volatility in the fixed income markets was unrivaled. As investors looked to raise cash, dealers, who typically act as shock absorbers for the bond market, were not able to match panicked sellers with willing buyers. A lack of liquidity occurred in the fixed income market and extreme price dislocations occurred.

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Strategic Benefit Services: Selected as a 2019 NAPA Top DC Advisor Team

Strategic Benefit Services is proud to be selected by the National Association of Plan Advisers as a 2019 Top DC Advisor Team

The NAPA Top DC Advisor Team list highlights the nation’s leading retirement plan advisor firms who help Americans prepare for a finalcially secure retirement. Selected teams having at least $100 million in DC assets under advisement. Visit the NAPA website to learn more about this award.

If you would like to speak with a consultant at Strategic Benefit Services or learn more about our services, please call (855) 882-9177 or email

Monday, April 13, 2020

Important considerations for retirement plan sponsors during the coronavirus pandemic

We are in unprecedented times and companies are facing a multitude of challenges in many aspects of business. Here at Strategic Benefit Services, we are committed to helping guide our clients through these times. Below are important considerations for retirement plan sponsors during the coronavirus pandemic.
  1. Eye on compliance. Remote work conditions have put distance between many collaborative human resources staff. It’s critical to keep a focus on key administrative tasks such as the timely funding of plan contributions and processing of participant requests. Keeping your retirement plan vendors apprised of any staff reductions and plan changes can help ensure smooth plan administration during this time.
  2. Working with a tighter budget

Thursday, April 9, 2020

COVID-19: Retirement and Benefit Plan Resources

As the COVID-19 crisis continues to unfold, we are closely monitoring news and updates from top sources. We’ll be updating this section as new developments unfold. Here are several key articles and links to help plan sponsors and administrators navigate the COVID-19 impact to retirement and benefit plans:

Retirement Plans

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

4 key CARES Act provisions for retirement plan sponsors

On March 27, President Trump signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, legislation intended to provide relief to Americans amid the coronavirus pandemic. In addition to emergency provisions including financial stimulus payments to qualifying Americans, the Act provides certain relief within retirement plans to participants and plan sponsors. Specifically, the Act provides for the following:

  1. Coronavirus-related distributions. Before December 31, 2020, IRA holders and participants in defined contribution plans can withdraw up to $100,000 as a “coronavirus-related distribution.” To qualify, one must have been diagnosed with COVID-19, had a spouse or dependent diagnosed, or experienced adverse financial consequences due to virus-related work reduction. The law refers to such financial consequences as those resulting from being quarantined, furloughed or laid off or having work hours reduced due to such virus or disease, being unable to work due to lack of child care due to such virus or disease, closing or reducing hours of a business owned or operated by the individual due to such virus or disease, or other factors as determined by the Secretary of the Treasury. Participants can self-certify their eligibility. Administratively, the $100,000 limit applies across all plans of the employer or controlled group.

    Update: Among other important clarifications for plan sponsors and individuals, the IRS guidance released on June 19 expands the availability of coronavirus-related distributions and loan relief. Qualification now extends to those with reduced pay, a rescinded job offer, or a delayed start to a new job due to COVID-19. It also extends to those whose spouse or fellow household member has suffered certain financial effects from COVID-19, including impacts to a business owned or operated by that person.

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