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TPR issues scheme funding guidance for difficult financial climate

The Pensions Regulator (TPR) has published its first annual funding statement to provide guidance on how pension scheme funding valuations should be approached in today's challenging economic environment.

It is aimed at trustees and employers of defined benefit (DB) pension schemes who are undertaking their scheme valuations with effective dates in the period September 2011 to September 2012. It therefore applies to approximately one third of the UK's 6500 DB schemes, and about 4m of the 12m DB memberships.

It is, however, relevant to all trustees and employers with a DB pension scheme.

Trustees and employers that follow the guidance in the statement are more likely to reach funding agreements that the regulator finds acceptable without the need for regulatory involvement.

The regulator's analysis shows that most schemes and sponsoring employers should be able to meet their pension promises to members with either no change, or only small changes, to their present deficit recovery plans.

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