UK pension deficit up by £40bn over January according to PwC’s Skyval Index

Feb 06, 2020

New figures released today from PwC’s Skyval Index show the deficit of defined benefit (DB) pension funds stood at £210bn at the end of January 2020 - an increase of £40bn from the previous month's end.

PwC’s Skyval Index, based on the Skyval platform used by pension funds, provides an aggregate health check of the UK’s c.5,450 corporate DB pension funds.  The current Skyval Index figures, based on the 'gilts plus' method widely used by scheme actuaries, are:

Assets

Liability target

    Deficit

£1,790bn     

£2,000bn

    £210bn

 

Steven Dicker, PwC’s chief actuary, said:

“Following a partial recovery in the latter part of 2019, gilt yields have dropped again over the month of January causing an increase in measured UK pension schemes liabilities. The increase in liabilities is offset to some extent by the positive asset return, which is mainly attributable to the positive return on bonds.

“With the general election and Brexit out of the way, at least some of the uncertainty of recent years has reduced and forecasters appear positive about the UK economy which may mitigate the risk of further interest rate falls. 

“However, UK pensions remain very sensitive to global factors and significant uncertainties remain both in the shorter term and with bigger picture investment concerns such as the impact of climate change.” 

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