The past week has seen a flurry of letters to the Department of Labor regarding its proposed rule on lifetime income illustrations for defined contribution plan participants. The Insured Retirement Institute and the American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries are now the latest to weigh in.

The IRI said it supports the DOL's focus on guaranteed lifetime income products and strategies.  Like other industry organizations that have commented on the proposed rule, the IRI believes more flexibility is needed. Instead of compelling everyone to use the same assumptions in their calculations of lifetime income for participants, they should be able to use different retirement ages and include outside savings in their calculations, it said.

"We are concerned that including specific assumptions in the safe harbors described in the Notice will steer plan sponsors to utilize these assumptions to ensure compliance at the expense of flexibility and innovation," the IRI said in its letter. "In lieu of the safe harbor approach, we urge DOL to adopt a rule under which plan sponsors would be required to provide lifetime income illustrations based on generally accepted investment theories and generally accepted actuarial principles."

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