Death and the discount rate: UK companies weigh pensions tweaks


Some of Britain’s biggest companies are considering wiping millions or even billions of pounds from their pension deficits by changing a couple of key assumptions, including when staff are expected to die. Retailer Tesco paved the way last month by slicing more than three billion pounds from the pensions deficit in its accounts, citing data showing slower rises in life expectancy as well as predictions of higher interest rates. “A lot of other companies will be asking to do something similar,” said Martin Hunter, principal at investment consultants Punter Southall. Pension shortfalls are a common problem around the world and…

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