According to the report, 36% of UK schemes were in surplus with a total surplus of £87.3 billion. As of March 31, 2006, 74% of schemes were in deficit with a total deficit of £54.9 billion and 26% of schemes were in surplus with a total surplus of £55.1 billion.
Schemes with larger memberships tend to have higher funding levels as do more mature schemes (measured as the proportion of liabilities that relate to pensions in payment), the report said. Out of the three largest sectors, the financial sector is the best funded (weighted average funding ratio 110%), followed by services (103%), and manufacturing (100%).
Equities (60%) and gilts and fixed interest (29%) continue to dominate schemes’ asset allocations in the Purple Book 200. The allocations were 61% and 28%, respectively, in the Purple Book 2006.
For the 2006-2007 levy year the PPF is expecting to collect £271 million in levies. For the first time the total levy was based on long-term risk, replacing the 2005-2006 levy which was based on membership numbers only. The report said 476 schemes paid no risk-based levy in 2006-07 (representing 6% of the total number of schemes and 7% of total liabilities) because they were better than 125% funded.
A majority of schemes in the Purple Book 2007 sample (61%) are either closed to new members or to future accruals. In 2006, 225 schemes in the Purple Book 2007 dataset went into ‘closed to new members’ status, similar to the number in 2004 and 2005, while 214 went into ‘closed to future accruals’ status, a marked rise from the 2005 level. Open schemes make up 38% of the total number of schemes.
The 2007 Purple Book is here .
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