U.S. Pension Plans Get Another Boost in May

June 6, 2008 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - A rise in the equity markets again in May led to a 3.2% increase in the funded status of the typical U.S. pension plan, according to BNY Mellon Asset Management.

Assets of the typical moderate risk pension plan increased 0.8%, while liabilities declined 2.4%, according to a BNY Mellon press release.  The boost was greater than the boost attributed in April to the equity market rally due to higher bond yields which resulted in lower liabilities for pension plans (See April Equity Markets Boost Plan Funding ).

“For the first time in 2008, the typical moderate risk pension plan experienced an improvement in funded status,” said Peter Austin, executive director of BNY Mellon Pension Services, in the press release.  “Improving investor confidence helped the stock market, while higher oil prices and the apparent end of Fed easing drove bond yields higher.”

Austin said BNY Mellon expects continued funded-status volatility over the course of the year.

Year-to-date, the typical U.S. pension plan improved its funded status by 1%.