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Traditional pension plans saw $40 billion boost in 2003

Corporate sponsors of large traditional pension plans contributed more than $40 billion to those plans in 2003 according to a survey conducted by the Committee on Investment of Employee Benefit Assets (CIEBA), an affiliate of the Association for Financial Professionals (AFP). The $44 billion in 2003 contributions was more than double the contributions made in 2002 ($21 billion) and four times the average contribution for the previous four years.

CIEBA represents the country's largest retirement funds and its members manage more than $1.1 trillion. The survey assessed 103 corporate plan sponsors responsible for the management of $686 billion in pension assets and $436 billion defined contribution (DC) plan assets. The plans in the survey cover 9.4 million DB plan participants and 5.3 million DC plan participants. Most CIEBA members (95% of those surveyed) sponsor both defined benefit and defined contribution plans. Eighty-three (83) percent of the plan sponsors covered by the survey made a contribution to their defined benefit (DB) plan(s) in 2003.

For defined contribution plans, employer and employee contributions per active employee increased for the ninth consecutive year. The combined total per employee was $7,047 in 2003 compared to $6,600 in 2002.

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