Retirement Plan Financial Management

Retirement Strategy
We know that a retirement program is a valued benefit that can be a large portion of the wage package, and is therefore a frequent topic of conversation with both Union members and Employers. We assist in the development of strategic plans that align your retirement goals (defined benefit, defined contribution and retiree medical) with your business and membership objectives. Our focus is on understanding the concerns and goals of both Labor and Management, and then working with the Trustees to develop a strategy that provides the greatest opportunity for success. ZoneCast has been designed for Multiemployer pension plans to project future zone status under a wide range of benefit design, asset return, contribution, and industry activity scenarios. The tool allows Trustee Boards to review current and projected plan funding in order to make decisions in a single meeting, which has proven to be especially useful for developing Funding Improvement or Rehabilitation Plans. The tool also includes measures of stochastic projections, illustrating the likelihood of future zone status, so decisions can be made reflecting the investment risk of the Fund.

Monitoring Risk

  • Risks are continually monitored and communicated proactively so that decisions can be made at the most opportune time. 

Contribution and Benefit Strategies

  • How does the contribution level support the benefits promised, in light of the various risks?
  • Can alternative plan designs better meet the trade off between benefits, contribution’s, and risk?

Investment Return

  • Does the investment return assumption appropriately reflect the Board’s risk tolerance?
  • How would the balance between contributions and investment return differ if less (or more) investment risk was taken?
  • What would the funding picture look like if returns are less (or greater) than expected?

Work Hours

  • How does the funding outlook change if work activity is higher (or lower) than expectations?
  • How reliant is funding to incoming contributions?


  • What happens if memberships live longer in retirement?

Changing Legislation

  • How do changing rules affect the way benefits are earned or funded?

Additional Services

  • Cowden regularly assists plan sponsors with various compliance related matters such as plan communications, required notices, benefit calculations, and government filings.

We welcome your inquiries about Cowden Associates, Inc. and look forward to introducing you to our services and professionals.