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Graph of the week: 10 best- and worst-funded UK corporate pension schemes

Only 29 of FTSE 100 company pension schemes registered a pension surplus in their most recent annual report, while 59 companies have pension deficits, UK pension and benefits consultancy JLT said in its quarterly report.

The total deficit in FTSE 100 pension schemes at 31 March 2016 is estimated to be £87 billion. This is broadly unchanged from the position 12 months ago.

In the past 12 months, the total disclosed pension liabilities of the FTSE 100 companies have fallen from £615 billion to £584 billion. A total of 16 companies have disclosed pension liabilities of more than £10 billion, the largest of which is Royal Dutch Shell with disclosed pension liabilities of £57 billion. A total of 21 companies have disclosed pension liabilities of less than £100 million, of which 12 companies have no defined benefit pension liabilities.

Moreover, JLT said that there continued to be significant funding of pension deficits. Last year saw total deficit funding of £6.23 billion, slightly up from £6.18 billion the previous year. BT led the way with a deficit contribution of £0.85 billion (net of ongoing costs), but 49 other FTSE 100 companies also reported significant deficit funding contributions in their most recent annual report and accounts.

Only 56 FTSE 100 companies are still providing more than a handful of current employees with DB benefits (i.e. ignoring companies who are incurring ongoing DB service costs of less than 1% of total payroll). Of these, only 23 companies (i.e. less than a quarter of the FTSE 100) are still providing DB benefits to a significant number of employees (defined as incurring ongoing DB service cost of more than 5% of total payroll).

There are a number of companies reporting very significant individual changes to investment strategies. Five FTSE 100 companies changed their bond allocations by more than 10%. You can read more about which UK corporate pension funds have the biggest bond exposures under this link.

Below find the full data set:

The data was taken from the JLT Employee Benefits' quarterly report, which covers all FTSE 100 companies. It includes analysis of all annual reports for years ending on or before the 31 March 2016 and published by 30 June 2016.

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