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Barclays bank deals final salary pension schemes a killer blow

News that Barclays bank is not only closing its final salary pension scheme but also transferring assets into a cheaper scheme which will reduce future liabilities has received widespread criticism from the unions and employees. Just weeks after agreeing the sale of its iShares division the company is looking to reorganise and rebalance its assets and liabilities and the final salary pension scheme appears to be on top of the list.

The 18,000 members currently in the scheme will see their assets transferred to a new pension fund arrangement which will ultimately reduce the liabilities of Barclays bank at a time when the scheme is over £2.2 billion in arrears. Many employees are outraged at the move as a number had remained with the company through these most difficult of times because of the substantial benefits of the final salary pension scheme arrangement. It has come as no surprise to learn that the unions will shortly be entering talks with Barclays bank management about the suggested change in pension fund arrangements with a distinct possibility of industrial action if a compromise arrangement cannot be agreed.

Is this the death knell for final salary pension schemes? Are we finally seeing corporate UK dumping final salary pension schemes forever?

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