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Compensation & Benefits

Retirement saving balances, contributions rose in 2020

A booming stock market and higher savings rates pushed average 401(k) account balances to record levels in the fourth quarter of 2020, according to a Fidelity analysis of its investors’ accounts.

Details elusive in Biden’s paid leave plan

Employees would be eligible for 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave under a plan announced by President Biden during an April 28 address to a joint session of Congress. We know some of the details on the proposal, but much remains unclear.

Minimum wage for fed contractor employees going up to $15 per hour

President Biden signed an executive order April 27 raising the minimum wage federal contractors must pay employees to $15 per hour, starting next year.

Biden proposes 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave

The proposal, part of a legislative package called the American Families Plan, would provide workers up to $4,000 a month, with a minimum of two-thirds of average weekly wages replaced, rising to 80% for the lowest-wage workers.

Snapshot: Most Americans favor $15 minimum wage

Even 71% of those who oppose a $15-per-hour minimum wage are in favor of raising it to some lesser amount.

Retirement confidence high despite pandemic

Fully 72% of working people surveyed earlier this year by the Employee Benefit Research Institute say they are optimistic they will live comfortably after they quit working.

Highest health costs paid by mid-sized employers

Mid-sized employers paid higher per-employee health care costs in 2020 than either small or large employers, according to the Mercer consulting firm’s latest National Survey of Employer-Sponsored Health Plans.

Employee vs. independent contractor dispute heads to the Supreme Court

Uber hasn’t had much luck in the employee classification department. Sure, it scored big in California, when it underwrote a ballot initiative to overturn A.B. 5, which would have classified its workers as employees. But it lost big in London and then capitulated, reclassifying its workers as employees. It struck out again in the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals, and now it’s appealing this decision to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Tax credit will reimburse for paid leave to receive vaccine

The credit, announced April 21, will be paid for using funds set aside in the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan stimulus legislation passed in March.

DOL guidance addresses retirement plan cybersecurity

The U.S. Department of Labor has issued new guidance for retirement plan sponsors on best practices for maintaining cybersecurity, including tips on how to protect employees’ retirement benefits.