Pensions - Articles - Pension deficit increases by GBP60bn in December 2018

New figures released from PwC’s Skyval Index show the deficit of defined benefit (DB) pension funds stood at £290bn at the end of December 2018, up £60bn from the deficit at the previous month end.

 PwC’s Skyval Index, based on the Skyval platform used by pension funds, provides an aggregate health check of the UK’s c.5,600 corporate DB pension funds. The current Skyval Index figures, based on the 'gilts plus' method widely used by scheme actuaries, are:

 Assets       Liability target      Deficit
 £1,560bn    £1,850bn                £290bn
 Steven Dicker, PwC’s chief actuary, said: “The end of November saw a temporary peak in bond yields, which has since reversed. This reversal, combined with a fall in assets, has increased the deficit over December.

 “Additionally, most schemes’ pension liabilities will increase following the High Court Judgement in late October that means UK pension schemes are now required to equalise Guaranteed Minimum Pensions (GMP) between men and women.

 “While the impact will vary for different schemes, the ruling could increase liabilities by 0.5% or more. The increase in the Index over the month allows for an estimate of the GMP equalisation liability.”

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