At Arthur J. Gallagher & Co., we try to learn everything we can about the industries we serve and the risks they may encounter. It’s a commitment that’s embedded in our corporate culture to expanding our expertise, continuing educational development and gathering topical updates to remain ahead of the curve.
Authors Chris Ratajczyk & Rick Strater discuss how a defined contribution benefits strategy can strongly improve employers’ total rewards programs. The whitepaper outlines how to evaluate the potential of this approach.
Last Tuesday, Fed Chair Janet Yellen appeared before the Senate Banking committee to deliver the Federal Reserve’s semiannual economic report to Congress. Yellen reported a slight improvement in the economy since her last testimony, with the unemployment rate decreasing from 6.7% to 6.1% and inflation increasing from 1.2% to 1.8%. Despite this improvement, she stressed that the recovery still has a ways to go and there were not any immediate plans to raise interest rates at this time, which have been held at near-zero levels since late 2008. She hinted that the Fed would be open to re-evaluating this decision should the labor market show notable improvement.
While many natural weather hazards are actively monitored, we know those situations can also be highly unpredictable. Lightning events are occurring more frequently, in more areas of the U.S. and for longer periods of time even outside the typical summer season. What safety measures can be taken to help protect children and faculty at schools though?
Employers, especially small businesses, often struggle with issues that may arise concerning Equal Employment Opportunity (EEOC) and compliance within their businesses. One of the most challenging issues that surfaces is focused on an employee's clothing or grooming that may be based upon religious beliefs. What should employers know about this topic? What guidelines should they implement? And are there any circumstances that could allow for exceptions to the rules? Have you effectively addressed this topic in your organization?
For the first time, performance-based awards are 50% of the total LTI award. Schmidt, Glass & Reda write about how public companies continue to review their incentive programs to ensure a strong link between performance achievement for the company and executive and for shareholders.
Last week investors pored over the minutes from the Federal Reserve’s June meeting, but there was little in the way of new information to be gleaned. There seems to be general agreement amongst the members that the unemployment and inflation rates, the two key data points of the Fed’s dual mandate, are behaving as the central bankers have expected. Absent any changes in the coming months, this should allow the Fed to finish tapering its quantitative easing program on schedule, finishing off with the last $15 billion reduction in October. What remains less clear is when the Fed will raise short-term interest rates, although there is widespread expectation that it will take place in mid-2015.
Lightning is an extremely significant weather hazard, but far too often underrated. The vast majority of the lightning casualties are easily preventable by following simple safety guidelines. This newsletter offers some recommendations for minimizing lightning-related risks while implementing critical safety measures. Conducting a thorough assessment of your emergency preparedness program and confirming the best solutions for your organization are most important for protecting your teams while minimizing risk.
In April 2015, the UK government guaranteed that each individual with Defined Contribution savings would have the right to free impartial guidance to make informed decisions about their pension. This article examines what this means to employers.
Directions newsletter is a monthly publication of the Benefits & HR Consulting operations of Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. The July 2014 issue includes healthcare reform updates, a technical bulletin, webinar information and a variety of benefits and HR news.
See the presentation slides from Sue Graf & Petula Workman of AJG Compliance from their webinar on Counting Hours Under the Final Rules with information on calculating hours of service, identifying full-time employees, monthly measurement and look back methods.