The Aerospace Corporation Evolution of a Pension Plan
|Time period||Participation||Plan benefit formula||Retirement benefits|
|Until April 1993||All employees||One-third of benefits accrue using a traditional defined-benefit plan formula, and two-thirds of benefits accrue using a variable-benefit formula in which retirement benefits can vary and participants bear investment risk.||Full retirement benefits at age 62.|
|April 1993-January 2005||Employees hired before April 1993 remain in the original plan.|
New hires are enrolled in a defined-contribution plan.
|Original plan is unchanged.|
Eight percent of pay is contributed to a defined-contribution plan on employees’ behalf.
|Full retirement benefits at age 62 for employees in the original plan. |
Retirement benefits available as governed by federal regulations and tax law.
|Current plan||Employees hired after April 1993 have a choice between participating solely in the defined-contribution plan or participating in a new plan that provides a mix of defined-contribution and defined-benefit plan participation.||Original plan remains unchanged for employees hired before April 1993.|
New plan allows employees a choice between:
--Continuing to receive a company contribution to the defined-contribution plan equal to 8 percent of salary
--Receiving a company contribution to the defined-contribution plan equal to 4 percent of salary and a benefit accrual in the defined-benefit pension plan designed to equal 4 percent of employees’ pay*. The same ratio of fixed and variable benefits used in the original pension plan applies to the defined-benefit pension plan.
|Full retirement benefits at age 62 for employees in the original plan.|
Employees participating solely in the defined-contribution plan can take retirement benefits at any time subject to federal regulations and tax law.
Employees hired after April 1993 and participating in the defined-benefit pension plan can get full retirement benefits from that plan at age 65.
*Because a portion of the defined-benefit pension plan is accrued using a variable-benefit formula in which benefits vary based on investment performance and participants bear investment risk, the 4 percent figure is calculated using an assumption of "acceptable investment performance," according to company representatives.