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Tag: Laura Zindel

Plan Sponsor Alert: What to Know About Service Provider Consolidation

By Laura Zindel & Cindy Sandomenico  Consolidation among service providers has been a long-developing trend. Empower, the nation’s second largest recordkeeper, has made headlines over the past few years with several large acquisitions including Personal Capital, Mass Mutual, and Prudential. Smaller deals are making headlines as well.  Consolidation activity can affect retirement plans of all shapes and sizes. As clients of service providers that may be affected by consolidation...

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Plan Sponsor Alert: Department of Labor Unveils Regulatory Agenda for 2023

By Cindy Sandomenico & Laura Zindel SECURE 2.0 was signed into law on December 29, 2022, makes sweeping changes to retirement savings plans. Before plan sponsors can take advantage of the many provisions in SECURE 2.0, the DOL will need to provide additional regulations and guidance on some of the provisions. In other words, there is more to come on SECURE 2.0. In the meantime, the DOL is focused on 17 items recently released in its biannual regulatory agenda. Plan sponsors and...

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Reinforcing U.S. Leadership and Competitiveness in Digital Assets

By Cindy Sandomenico & Laura Zindel Recent volatility in the digital assets market doesn’t appear to slow its growth. In fact, Fidelity recently found that nearly 90% of institutional investors find characteristics of digital assets appealing.[1] As investor interest continues to grow, retirement plan sponsors should pay close attention to developments in the digital assets industry, as plan sponsors may soon need to decide whether to add digital assets to their plan’s lineup. In...

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Plan Sponsor Alert: Digital Assets’ Potential Benefits and Risks

By Laura Zindel and Cindy Sandomenico Digital assets such as cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are growing and disrupting the way consumers and businesses pay, bank, and invest. A recent survey by Capitalize found that 60 percent of respondents would like a cryptocurrency investment option in their 401(k) plans. Several service providers, including Fidelity, have responded to that request by offering 401(k) participants direct but limited cryptocurrency investment options....

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Abandoned 401(K) Accounts and the Great Resignation

By Cindy Sandomenico, CPA and Laura K. Zindel, CPA  The trend of U.S. workers leaving their jobs and employers struggling with high levels of employee turnover continues to gain momentum. Another 4.5 million U.S. workers quit their jobs in November alone, according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Meanwhile, the number of job openings in the United States remains elevated at 10.6 million, as companies across sectors and industries continue to have a hard time recruiting...

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SAS 136: What Plan Sponsors Need to Know About Upcoming Changes to ERISA Plan Audits

By Laura K. Zindel, CPA and Cindy Sandomenico, CPA Employee benefit plan sponsors and their auditing firms need to begin preparing for the adoption of Statement on Auditing Standards No. 136 (SAS 136), Forming an Opinion and Reporting on Financial Statements of Employee Benefit Plans Subject to ERISA (Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974). This auditing standard was enacted by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), and was originally effective...

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ERISA Update and Outlook for 2022

By Cindy Sandomenico, CPA and Laura K. Zindel, CPA  Employers have spent the last two years dealing with many challenges and disruptions, and they are now looking to move forward in 2022 against a backdrop of economic and pandemic-related uncertainty and market volatility. Here are four themes that plan sponsors should be keeping a close eye on in 2022.   The #1 Financial Story of the Year: Inflation You can’t go anywhere without hearing about inflation—and for a good reason. The...

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Retirement Plan Limits Announced for 2021

The Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) announced on October 26, 2020, the retirement plan contribution limits, adjusted for cost-of-living adjustments, for 2021.  These adjustments can be found in greater detail in IRS Notice 2020-79. The COVID-19 pandemic’s continuing impact on the U.S. economy contributed to relatively flat changes in the 2021 COLA amounts as U.S. economic deflation during the first half of 2020 impacted the COLA metrics. The IRS increased the IRS annual compensation...

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