UK - The combined deficit of the top 100 UK firms' defined benefit schemes has shrunk by £8bn ($12.6bn) over the last year, Pension Capital Strategies says.
The consultant's monthly index of funding positions of FTSE100 schemes, under accounting measure IAS19/FRS17, showed an improvement from a deficit of £74bn at the end September last year to £66bn this year - a funding level improvement from 84% to 86%.
However, PCS managing director Charles Cowling noted the last year had seen some recovery in markets but little overall change in total pension deficits.
He said: "Despite a small funding improvement in the FTSE100 and FTSE350, the total deficit of all UK pension schemes stands at £221bn, an increase of £55bn compared with the same time last year. We still await clarity on the impact of the government's announcement that it plans to change all RPI-linked increases to benefits to become CPI-linked."
Elsewhere, PCS found for FTSE350 companies the combined deficit had improved from £84bn in September last year to £79bn this year - a funding level improvement from 84% to 85%.
Cowling said the shift from RPI to CPI could overall reduce pension liabilities by 5% to 10% - in the UK private sector scheme liabilities could be reduced by up to £120bn.
"We believe it is likely that the change will be more limited in scope and cover just statutory increases to pensions and not those RPI-linked increases which are written into pension scheme rules. This could reduce the impact of the change by half, but it would still be a very material reduction in pension scheme deficits," Cowling added.
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