American Express Latest to Suspend 401(k) Match

July 16, 2009 ( - American Express Co. has suspended its 401(k) match for U.S. plans, as part of a cost-cutting move.

Reuters reported the credit-card company told employees the suspension of matching and conversion contributions into the Retirement Savings Plan 401(k) accounts of U.S. workers would be effective March 30. The company also suspended pension contributions for U.K. workers.

“The decision was made to help control our costs in an extremely challenging economic environment,” spokeswoman Joanna Lambert told Reuters, adding that the company intended to resume the contributions “as soon as economic and business conditions allow.”

Reuters said mounting credit losses sent company earnings spiraling lower, and a paralysis in short-term funding markets forced the firm to seek U.S. government funds.