Solving the pensions puzzle

A host of market and structural problems are plaguing US corporate pension plans. Derivatives dealers are pitching a number of potential solutions.

The private pensions industry in the US is under tremendous strain. Record low interest rates and depressed equity values have undermined defined benefit (DB) plan surpluses and put many fund managers – and the corporate finance directors who have to make up plan shortfalls – in a bind.

Meanwhile, the so-called non-qualified pension schemes (those not guaranteed by the government), which proliferated during the bull market, now seem precarious in light of the subsequent decline in corporate

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