Milliman Reports a Bad Year for Pensions

January 6, 2012 ( – Milliman, Inc’s latest Pension Funding Index shows in December, pensions experienced a $59.7 billion decrease in pension funded status.

According to Milliman, the poor performance of December cemented a bad year, leaving the nation’s 100 largest defined benefit pension plans with $236.4 billion increased deficit as corporate pensions faced record underfunding. 

“This was an unusually dispiriting year for these 100 pensions,” said John Ehrhardt, co-author of the Milliman Pension Funding Study. “Assets treaded water this year, producing an anemic $12.3 billion increase in value as record-low interest rates increased pension liabilities by $248.7 billion.”

The full implications of this bad year have yet to be determined and will be illustrated in detail by the 2012 Milliman Pension Funding Study, due out in the spring of 2012.

While 2011 was a bad year, the year-end 72.4% funded ratio still could not eclipse the record of 70.5% set in May 2003.

To view the complete study, visit