Editorials

  1. The advancement of a bad idea

    trueEleven member countries of the European Commission are planning to introduce a financial transactions tax in 2016. If it takes effect as planned, the tax could cost pension funds, not only in Europe but also in North America, billions of dollars every year.

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  2. Tax-exempt but tax conscious

    trueEven though pension funds and other tax-exempt institutional asset pools don't pay taxes on their investment income, the taxes paid by the companies in their investment portfolios should concern institutional investors.

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  3. Tightening up trading costs

    trueInstitutional investors must keep careful watch on trading costs, and take steps to minimize them, as recent research shows they rival investment management fees in their impact on portfolios.

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  4. Better oversight of HFT

    trueMichael Lewis shocked the investing public with his charge that the stock market is rigged. He will have done investors a great service if he has also shocked the Securities and Exchange Commission into re-examining high-frequency trading and taking steps to halt it.

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  5. Let's play ball

    trueTo paraphrase a line from “Field of Dreams,” if you build it, they will come - “it” being a multiple employer pension plan, and “they” being employers.

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  6. Misguided search for revenue

    trueThe federal government's appetite for more revenue to feed an expanding federal budget threatens to jeopardize retirement income security.

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  7. A pathway to stronger plans

    trueAn independent panel of the Society of Actuaries has laid out a path to strengthen public defined benefit plans, championing the valuation of pension liabilities in a more economically realistic way.

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  8. The pension fund cookie jar

    trueCorporate defined benefit plans, still struggling to raise funding levels, are being used, in the words of one actuarial consultant, as a cookie jar by Congress to finance unrelated federal spending.

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  9. Better way to elect directors

    trueIf proxy voting is the principal way shareholders influence corporate governance and the direction of corporations, the rules of the Securities and Exchange Commission fall short in enabling shareholders in contested elections to select the combination of nominees they believe will best foster ...

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  10. Cartoon: Pension debt

    trueTroubles with the city pension funds in Chicago, Los Angeles and New York offer an ominous tale.

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  11. Ominous tales of three cities

    trueA farewell speech by Michael Bloomberg in New York, a new report on the future of Los Angeles and concerns expressed by Chicago's mayor all underscore the need to address the looming financial crisis that affects the country's three largest urban centers.

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  12. Balancing short, long term

    trueInstitutional investment managers and corporations alike have been criticized in recent years for an excessive focus on short-term performance, a practice that can lead to suboptimal outcomes and undermine long-term value creation.

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  13. Constitutional showdown

    trueIf the purpose of a constitution is to establish a framework for a sustainable system of governance, including fiscal management, then state constitutions with provisions guaranteeing pension benefits fall short.

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  14. Presumption of company stock

    trueThe Department of Labor's intervention seeking a U.S. Supreme Court hearing on the responsibilities of fiduciaries concerning company stock as an investment option in defined contribution plans might lead to better guidance on a long-standing exception to the diversification rules of the Employee ...

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