Media firm ends entry to final salary pensions

Media group Pearson has become the latest UK firm to close its final salary
pension scheme.

The publisher of the Financial Times said existing members of its final
salary scheme would not be affected, but staff starting at the company after 1 January
2003 would not be eligible.

Pearson director for people David Bell said the aim was not to save money,
but to reduce investment risk. He said the scheme for new staff would aim to
match the retirement benefits of an average employee in the final salary
scheme.

A more flexible version of a money purchase scheme, it will allow employees
to increase contributions as they near retirement.

Employees over 45 will be able to pay in up to 8 per cent of their salary
and receive contributions of double that from the company. Younger employees
will be able to increase contributions on a graded scale.

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