In 1799, They Said ‘No’ to Taxes

In March 1799. not far from where I live today, an auctioneer named John Fries led a protest against the first direct tax on American homeowners. Alexander Hamilton wanted him hanged as an example of the consequences of defying the central government.

A 5-Year Cushion against Market Risk

'Prudent Asset Allocation' gives you the confidence of knowing that over the next five years, you don’t have to worry about market conditions,” says Louis S. Harvey of Dalbar, the financial services research firm. 'You can put more money into growth assets.'

‘Smart,’ from UK, Enters the US PEP Market

'Smart' is the recently-launched American branch of a British fintech with expertise in a kind of retirement savings plan that's called a 'master trust' in the UK and a 'pooled employer plan' or PEP in the US. RIJ interviewed two of its top executives.

Research Roundup

Almost every controversial subject in the US today--from Fed policy to machine learning to immigration--contains an element or theme related to retirement policy. The articles reviewed in this month's Research Roundup are proof of that.
Featured

Are Annuity Buyers Smarter than Other People?

“The observed lack of annuitization does not necessarily mean that people are better off without annuities,” write retirement specialists Jeff Brown, Olivia Mitchell and others in a new research paper. They link low financial literacy to low annuity sales.

Secrets of Tax-Efficient Drawdown

In a regular new feature on the latest retirement-related research, we look at a variety of recent articles, including one that might just change the way you think about tax-efficient spending strategies.
News

IRS relaxes penalty that discouraged auto-enrollment

A penalty on plan sponsors for failing to make scheduled deferrals to auto-enrolled plan participants was identified as a barrier to adoption of auto-enrollment into retirement plans, so the IRS has conditionally removed it, on a trial basis, until 2021.

Towers Watson CEO extols ‘bridge’ strategy

People who retire at age 62 should spend personal savings for eight years and claim Social Security at age 70, rather than claim SS at age 62. So says John Haley, CEO of Towers Watson, in this lively video taped at the Bipartisan Policy Center recently.