PENSION AND OTHER POSTRETIREMENT BENEFITS
|12 Months Ended|
Dec. 31, 2012
|PENSION AND OTHER POSTRETIREMENT BENEFITS|
|PENSION AND OTHER POSTRETIREMENT BENEFITS||
NOTE 12. PENSION AND OTHER POSTRETIREMENT BENEFITS
We sponsor several contributory and noncontributory pension plans covering substantially all employees. Generally, hourly employee pension benefits are earned based on years of service and compensation during active employment while future benefits for salaried employees are determined using a cash balance formula. However, the level of benefits and terms of vesting may vary among plans. Pension plan assets are administered by trustees and are principally invested in equity securities and fixed income securities. It is our policy to make contributions to our various qualified plans in accordance with statutory and contractual funding requirements and any additional contributions we determine are appropriate.
Obligations, Assets and Funded Status
The following tables present the changes in the benefit obligations and the various plan assets, the funded status of the plans, and the amounts recognized in our Consolidated Balance Sheets for our significant pension plans. Benefit obligation balances presented below reflect the projected benefit obligation (PBO) for our pension plans.
In addition to the pension plans in the above table, we also maintain less significant defined benefit pension plans in 14 other countries outside the U.S. and the U.K. that comprise less than 2 percent and 4 percent of our pension plan assets and obligations, respectively. These plans are reflected in "Other liabilities and deferred revenue" on our Consolidated Balance Sheets.
The following table presents information regarding total accumulated benefit obligation and underfunded pension plans that are included in the preceding table:
Components of Net Periodic Pension Cost
The following table presents the net periodic pension cost under our plans:
Other changes in benefit obligations and plan assets recognized in other comprehensive income in 2012, 2011 and 2010 are as follows:
The amounts in accumulated other comprehensive loss that are expected to be recognized as components of net periodic pension cost during the next fiscal year are as follows:
The table below presents various assumptions used in determining the pension benefit obligation for each year and reflects weighted-average percentages for the various plans:
The table below presents various assumptions used in determining the net periodic pension cost and reflects weighted-average percentages for the various plans:
Our investment policies in the U.S. and U.K. provide for the rebalancing of assets to maintain our long-term strategic asset allocation. We are committed to its long-term strategy and do not attempt to time the market given empirical evidence that asset allocation is more critical than individual asset or investment manager selection. Rebalancing of the assets has and continues to occur. The rebalancing is critical to having the proper weighting of assets to achieve the expected total portfolio returns. We believe that our portfolio is highly diversified and does not have any significant exposure to concentration risk. The plan assets for our defined benefit pension plans do not include any of our common stock.
U.S. Plan Assets
For the U.S. qualified pension plans, our assumption for the expected return on assets was 8.0 percent in 2012. Projected returns are based primarily on broad, publicly traded equity and fixed income indices and forward-looking estimates of active portfolio and investment management. We expect additional positive returns from this active investment management. Based on the historical returns and forward-looking return expectations, we have elected to use an assumption of 8.0 percent per year beginning in 2013.
The primary investment objective is to exceed, on a net-of-fee basis, the rate of return of a policy portfolio comprised of the following:
The fixed income component is structured to represent a custom bond benchmark that will closely hedge the change in the value of our liabilities. This component is structured in such a way that its benchmark covers approximately 90 percent of the plan's exposure to changes in its discount rate (AA corporate bond yields). In order to achieve a hedge on more than the targeted 46 percent of plan assets invested in fixed income securities, the Benefits Policy Committee does permit the fixed income managers, other managers or the custodian/trustee to utilize derivative securities, as part of a liability driven investment strategy to further reduce the plan's risk of declining interest rates. However, all managers hired to manage assets for the trust are prohibited from using leverage unless specifically discussed with the committee and allowed for in their guidelines.
U.K. Plan Assets
For the U.K. qualified pension plans, our assumption for the expected return on assets was 6.5 percent in 2012. The methodology used to determine the rate of return on pension plan assets in the U.K. was based on establishing an equity-risk premium over current long-term bond yields adjusted based on target asset allocations. Our strategy with respect to our investments in these assets is to be invested in a suitable mixture of return-seeking assets (equities and real estate) and liability matching assets (bonds) with a long-term outlook. Therefore, the risk and return balance of our U.K. asset portfolio should reflect a long-term horizon. To achieve these objectives we have established the following targets:
As part of our strategy in the U.K. we have not prohibited the use of any financial instrument, including derivatives. Based on the above discussion, we have elected to use our assumption of 5.8 percent per year beginning in 2013.
Fair Value of U.S. Plan Assets
The fair values of U.S. pension plan assets at December 31, 2012, by asset category were as follows:
The fair values of U.S. pension plan assets at December 31, 2011, by asset category were as follows:
The reconciliation of Level 3 assets was as follows:
Fair Value of U.K. Plan Assets
In July 2012, the U.K. pension plan purchased an insurance contract that will guarantee payment of specified pension liabilities. The contract defers payment for 10 years. This is included in the table below in Level 3 at a value of $424 million.
The fair values of U.K. pension plan assets at December 31, 2012, by asset category were as follows:
The fair values of U.K. pension plan assets at December 31, 2011, by asset category were as follows:
The reconciliation of Level 3 assets was as follows:
Level 3 Assets
The investments in an insurance contract, private equity and real estate funds, for which quoted market prices are not available, are valued at their estimated fair value as determined by applicable investment managers or by quarterly financial statements of the funds. These financial statements are audited at least annually. In conjunction with our investment consultant, we monitor the fair value of the insurance contract as periodically reported by our insurer and their counterparty risk. The fair value of all real estate properties, held in the partnerships, are valued at least once per year by an independent professional real estate valuation firm. Fair value generally represents the fund's proportionate share of the net assets of the investment partnerships as reported by the general partners of the underlying partnerships. Some securities with no readily available market are initially valued at cost, utilizing independent professional valuation firms as well as market comparisons with subsequent adjustments to values which reflect either the basis of meaningful third-party transactions in the private market or the fair value deemed appropriate by the general partners of the underlying investment partnerships. In such instances, consideration is also given to the financial condition and operating results of the issuer, the amount that the investment partnerships can reasonably expect to realize upon the sale of the securities and any other factors deemed relevant. The estimated fair values are subject to uncertainty and therefore may differ from the values that would have been used had a ready market for such investments existed and such differences could be material.
Estimated Future Contributions and Benefit Payments
We plan to contribute approximately $170 million to our defined benefit pension plans in 2013. The table below presents expected future benefit payments under our pension plans:
Other Pension Plans
We also sponsor defined contribution plans for certain hourly and salaried employees. Our contributions to these plans were $74 million, $72 million and $44 million for the years ended December 31, 2012, 2011 and 2010.
Other Postretirement Benefits
Our other postretirement benefit plans provide various health care and life insurance benefits to eligible employees, who retire and satisfy certain age and service requirements, and their dependents. The plans are contributory and contain cost-sharing features such as caps, deductibles, coinsurance and spousal contributions. Employer contributions are limited by formulas in each plan. Retiree contributions for health care benefits are adjusted annually and we reserve the right to change benefits covered under these plans. There were no plan assets for the postretirement benefit plans as our policy is to fund benefits and expenses for these plans as claims and premiums are incurred.
Obligations and Funded Status
The following tables present the changes in the benefit obligations, the funded status of the plans and the amounts recognized in our Consolidated Balance Sheets for our significant other postretirement benefit plans. Benefit obligation balances presented below reflect the accumulated postretirement benefit obligations (APBO) for our other postretirement benefit plans.
In addition to the other postretirement plans in the above table, we also maintain less significant postretirement plans in three other countries outside the U.S. that comprise less than 1 percent of our postretirement obligations. These plans are reflected in "Other liabilities and deferred revenue" in our Consolidated Balance Sheets.
Components of Net Periodic Other Postretirement Benefits Cost
The following table presents the net periodic other postretirement benefits cost under our plans:
Other changes in benefit obligations recognized in other comprehensive income in 2012, 2011 and 2010 were as follows:
The amount in accumulated other comprehensive loss that is expected to be recognized as a component of net periodic other postretirement benefit cost during the next fiscal year is an actuarial loss of $6 million.
The table below presents assumptions used in determining the other postretirement benefit obligation for each year and reflects weighted-average percentages for our other postretirement plans:
The table below presents assumptions used in determining the net periodic other postretirement benefits cost and reflects weighted-average percentages for the various plans:
Our consolidated other postretirement benefit obligation is determined by application of the terms of health care and life insurance plans, together with relevant actuarial assumptions and health care cost trend rates. For measurement purposes, an 8.00 percent annual rate of increase in the per capita cost of covered health care benefits was assumed in 2012. The rate was assumed to remain at 8.00 percent in 2013 and then decrease on a linear basis to 5.00 percent through 2019 and remain at that level thereafter. An increase in the health care cost trends of 1 percent would increase our APBO by $27 million as of December 31, 2012 and the net periodic other postretirement benefit expense for 2013 by $1 million. A decrease in the health care cost trends of 1 percent would decrease our APBO by $23 million as of December 31, 2012 and the net periodic other postretirement benefit expense for 2013 by $1 million.
Estimated Benefit Payments
The table below presents expected benefit payments under our other postretirement benefit plans:
The entire disclosure for pension and other postretirement benefits.
Reference 1: http://www.xbrl.org/2003/role/presentationRef