US General Motors has made a $4bn cash contribution to its US hourly and salaried pension plans.
The payment, which saw $2.7bn going to the hourly plan and $1.3bn to the salaried plan, was the first step of a deficit-reducing plan announced in October, which also includes a contribution of $2bn in GM stocks. (Global Pensions: 29 October 2010)
The stock contribution will be valued as a plan asset for pension funding purposes at the time of contribution and for balance sheet purposes when the shares become fully transferable, it added.
"This pension contribution puts us another step closer to our goal of fully funding our pension plans and achieving minimal debt," said GM vice chairman and chief financial officer Chris Liddell.
"With a healthy balance sheet, a lower cost structure and focus on revenue generation, we continue to put in place the fundamentals for sustainable success."
The firm's US pension plans were underfunded by $17.1bn as of December 2009, while the contributions form part of a larger plan by GM to reduce its overall leverage by $11bn.
The contribution comes two weeks after GM launched a historic initial public stock offering worth $23bn and 17 months after it exited government-funded bankruptcy restructuring.
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