Monday, August 19, 2019

In Brief: HSAs, Wage Fights

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A new study by Devenir found that the number of health savings accounts (HSAs) has increased to more than 7 million as of June 30, 2012, with assets totaling more than $14 billion. That's a 12 percent jump in accounts and a 21 percent rise in assets over the same time last year. HSA participants have kept 30 percent of their contributions this year, compared with 24 percent in 2011.

Participants in 401(k) plans tend to take out more loans during the summer months, according to an analysis by Charles Schwab. Generally, requests for loans increase about 16 percent in those months, the report said. While the economy might seem like a likely culprit, Catherine Golladay, a vice president of participant services for Schwab, said a big reason that participants dig into their 401(k)s is the need for college funding for their children.

The number of wage-hour lawsuits filed under the Fair Labor Standards Act hit a record mark this year, according to the law firm Seyfarth Shaw LLP. A total of 7,064 cases were filed in fiscal year 2012, compared with 2,035 in fiscal year 2002. Misclassification of employees, alleged uncompensated work and issues regarding overtime were the top causes of the lawsuits.

Cash balance plans increased by 21 percent in 2010 (the latest data available), nearly doubling 2009's jump of 11 percent, according to the 2012 National Cash Balance Research Report by Kravitz. Cash balance plans are growing faster than all other retirement plans, including 401(k)s, which logged a 1 percent decline over the same period.

A new survey finds that employers and employees don't see eye-to-eye on the role of social media in the workplace, a new Deloitte LLP survey suggests. For instance, 45 percent of executives said social media has a positive effect on the culture of their workplaces, while only 27 percent of employees agreed. Also, 38 percent of corporate leaders said they thought social media generated more transparency in the workplace, compared with only 17 percent of employees.

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