Author Archives: jwatkins

Just a Thought: Is 401(k) Chaos Coming?

The 1st Circuit just handed down what in my opinion is one of the best well-reasoned and well-written opinions I have read in my 36 years of practicing law. If you practice in the 401(k)/403(b) arena, you should do yourself … Continue reading

Posted in 401k, 401k compliance, 401k investments, 404c compliance, closet index funds, compliance, cost consciousness, cost efficient, ERISA, ERISA litigation, fiduciary compliance, fiduciary law, Fiduciary prudence, fiduciary standard, investment advisers, investments, pension plans, prudence, retirement plans, SEC, securities compliance, wealth management | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Why the SEC Will Never Enact a Meaningful Fiduciary Standard

I continue to enjoy reading analyses on the SEC’s BI proposal. These are analyses from industry leaders, people who I greatly admire and respect. When people ask my opinion, I just tell them it  is all just a cruel game, that … Continue reading

Posted in closet index funds, consumer protection, cost consciousness, cost efficient, fiduciary compliance, fiduciary law, Fiduciary prudence, fiduciary standard, prudence, SEC | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Case for Liability-Driven Investing

I was recently interviewed by Robin Powell for “The Evidence-Based Investor,” a U.K.-based blog. Robin is a highly respected journalist and one the leaders of the evidence-based investment movement. The topic of our discussion was the investment litigation trend in … Continue reading

Posted in 401k, 401k compliance, 401k investments, 403b, 404c compliance, cost consciousness, cost efficient, ERISA, ERISA litigation, evidence based investing, fiduciary compliance, fiduciary law, Fiduciary prudence, fiduciary standard, investment advisers, investments, pension plans, prudence, retirement plans, wealth management, wealth preservation | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

May It Please the Court: Vanguard Funds As ERISA Benchmarks Study

InvestSense – The art of combining sound, proven investment strategies with common sense. I recently posted an article on one of my blogs discussing my concerns over some of the reasons given by some courts for dismissing actions against 401(k) … Continue reading

Posted in 401k, 401k compliance, 401k investments, 403b, 404c, 404c compliance, closet index funds, compliance, cost consciousness, cost efficient, ERISA, ERISA litigation, evidence based investing, fiduciary compliance, fiduciary law, Fiduciary prudence, fiduciary standard, pension plans, prudence, retirement plans, wealth management, wealth preservation | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Fundamental Unfairness: Inequitable and Inconsistent Interpretations of ERISA

As I mentioned in an earlier post, a number of recent decisions dismissing 401(k)/403(b) excessive fees/breach of fiduciary duties actions have highlighted the issue of fundamental fairness in the courts involving ERISA issues. The recent dismissal of the Checksmart action … Continue reading

Posted in 401k, 401k compliance, 404c, 404c compliance, cost consciousness, cost efficient, ERISA, ERISA litigation, fiduciary compliance, fiduciary law, Fiduciary prudence, fiduciary standard, pension plans, prudence, retirement plans, wealth management, wealth preservation | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Fundamental Unfairness: ERISA Section 404(c) Is Not Working

“404(c) is not working. It does not provide participants with the information they need to make informed and reasoned investment decisions…But it can work, it must work.”1 This quote came from the 2006 testimony of Fred Reish, one of the … Continue reading

Posted in 404c, 404c compliance, compliance, ERISA, ERISA litigation, fiduciary compliance, fiduciary law, Fiduciary prudence, pension plans, retirement plans | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

“Fundamental Unfairness: Defined Contribution Plans and the Courts-Part I”

Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored – Aldous Huxley Men occasionally stumble across the truth, pick themselves up and quickly move on, as if nothing ever happened. – Sir Winston Churchill I provide fiduciary oversight consulting … Continue reading

Posted in 401k, 401k investments, 403b, 404c, 404c compliance, cost consciousness, ERISA, ERISA litigation, fiduciary compliance, fiduciary law, Fiduciary prudence, fiduciary standard, investment advisers, pension plans, prudence, retirement plans, wealth management, wealth preservation | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,