PBGC Stock Sale Gives Boost to United Pension Plans

February 16, 2006 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation's (PBGC) sale of UAL Corp. stock produced a $135 million boost for the UAL pension plans the agency took over.

The agency will transfer to the plans about 30% of the $450 million it received from the sale this year, PBGC spokesman Gary Pastorius said, according to Bloomberg.   The agency sold half of the stake in the company it had obtained in exchange for taking over the pensions (See  PBGC to Sell UAL Shares).

The agency disclosed in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday that it now owns 11.1 million UAL shares and expects to receive additional stock after United Air Lines settles with all its creditors, Bloomberg reported. The agency also has 5 million convertible UAL preferred shares, the filing said.

The PBGC took on four United pension plans covering union workers, including pilots, bag handlers and flight attendants.   It will contribute $6.6 billion to the plans to make up for part of the underfunding, which will leave the plan underfunded by $3.2 billion before the transfer from the stock sale.

The additional retirement benefits to be paid to United retirees and current employees after they retire will be reflected in their regular monthly pension payments, Pastorius said.