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Brooke Sutherland

GE’s Latest Casualty? Pension Promises

Freezing some benefits is a tough but necessary decision that will help the company cap one of its biggest liabilities.

GE needs to reduce its debt load and that’s what it’s doing, but the pension move leaves a bitter taste. 

GE needs to reduce its debt load and that’s what it’s doing, but the pension move leaves a bitter taste. 

Photographer: Bloomberg/Bloomberg

General Electric Co. employees are still paying the price for the company's mistakes.

The industrial conglomerate announced on Monday that it will freeze U.S. pension benefits for approximately 20,000 salaried employees and supplemental payouts for 700 executives. They’ll get to keep the benefits they’ve already accrued, and a plan to prefund an additional $4 billion to $5 billion of those obligations helps ensure they will actually get paid out. There’s no change for retirees, and hourly production workers won’t be impacted, either.