Pension in Jeopardy

Discussion in 'UPS Retirement Topics' started by AirJock, Apr 3, 2006.

  1. AirJock

    AirJock New Member

  2. AirJock

    AirJock New Member

  3. retired

    retired Guest

    Interesting news story.

    They left out the fact that the multi employer pension fund that UPS is in includes teamsters that earned pensions at companies that failed to fund their own employees pensions. That forces UPS teamsters benefits to be diluted because they have to support the teamsters from the other companies. I don't think that it is fair to expect UPS to fund pensions from all these other corporations that failed to fund their own employees pensions.
  4. AirJock

    AirJock New Member

    The disturbing fact is that the company is asking it's employees to contribute yearly to fund the lobbyist in Washington for concessions to expand their operation and business but, in this case the employees lose in this deal.
  5. retired

    retired Guest

    I'd appreciate it if you could provide specific information about how UPS employees lose in this deal. Do you have some numbers?
  6. retiredone

    retiredone Member

    I agree with the comment regarding UPS participation in multi employer plans. The burden of many employers is now being carried by fewer companies. One of the problems is simply declining union membership so there are less contributors to cover retired teamsters. The company offered to buy their way out of the pension plan back in 1997 and I believe that UPS retirees pensions would have been safe today if the rank and file hadn't resisted. Let's face facts: There are a number of teamster pension plans that are paying generous benefits and have no financial concerns at all. The problem is not now, nor has it ever been, the company's contributions. Now consider the Central State Fund, which was looted and mismanged by the "trustees" for years. It's hard to understand why the rank and file Teamsters took this, and then turned their noses up at the life ring tossed by the company back then. I don't understand why the rank and file Teamsters were so passive while their "brothers' were stealing their future. Given a choice of who to trust, I'll take the company any day of the week.
  7. trickpony1

    trickpony1 Well-Known Member

    You probably remember the "thrift plan", you know, the little nest egg that everyone from the district manager to the lowly part-timer could contribute to. I was led to believe that the thrift plan would be around forever then, suddenly, the company decided to liquidate the thrift plan and force us to do something else with that money, hopefully buy company stock.

    Before 5 people post telling how well they have done....I already know, I rolled some into stock and bought more.

    The moral of this story is....if the company can just up and change their mind about the thrift plan who is to say they won't screw with the health, welfare and pension if they gain control of it?

    I am on the fence on this issue but I occasionally lean towards the company gaining control as they couldn't possibly screw it up any worse than it already is.
  8. 30andout

    30andout New Member

    I don't think it really was the rank and file that made that decision back then, I think we were told to go on strike so teamsters could keep control of the funds.
  9. AirJock

    AirJock New Member

    Lets face it. It is no longer the same company we once knew. There's a new breed of people calling the shots now and all bets are off on where this is going to take us. As stated in the news clip large corporations are looking to put the pension burden onto the federal government which is already in deficit.

    The "Thrift" plan is gone, the stock went public and the medical has changed so now we pay more. Rumor has it that non union new hires are no longer being offered Medical benefits. Everything is changing.

    In order to resolve the "Numbers" issue that Retired requested we need to know exactly what concessions UPS requested Senetor John Boehner to get for them in this new bill. The Pension Reform bill and the corporate concessions with in will hurt the employees in the future..
  10. retiredone

    retiredone Member

    I agree that it is unfortunate that the Thrift Plan was discontinued. However, let's put that in perspective. The Thrift Plan was around for many years and was spectacularly sucessful for those that invested. I think much of the investment went into UPS stock and the company contributed an extra portion. If the company contributions to the Central States Fund had been treated in a similar manner by the Trustees, there would be no problem today with that fund. The Thrift Plan was established under rules that allowed it's discontinuance, so UPS was playing by the agreed rules when the plan was discontinued. The problem faced today by Central States is that UPS is performing as promised in the contract, but the Central States Fund is unable to keep their promises because of past misbehaviour by the trustees. It still strikes me as amazing that the rank and file would put trust in the very people who screwed them in the past, while complaining about the organization that kept it's promises. If I make a mistake, I try to learn from it and adjust accordingly.
  11. wkmac

    wkmac Well-Known Member

    Trickpony, 30 and Out, Airjock and Retiredone,
    Nice posts from all of you. You each touched on a variety of areas that together bring it all into perspective. Nice Job and very well said!
  12. wornoutupser

    wornoutupser Well-Known Member

    PLEASE remember that there are 7 trustees EACH for the Teamsters AND UPS!!!!!!! The Teamsters ARE NOT THE ONLY ONES THAT ALLOWED THIS MES TO HAPPEN!
    UPS wants bargaining power in 08 and they have set themselves up for it.

    Just my honorable opinion..........
  13. retiredone

    retiredone Member


    Please elaborate on your post.

    I know that UPS has a representative NOW, but I thought that was a fairly recent event. Also, the company respresentation is minority (1 person) and not equal to the union representation (several members).

    I am sure that the company has never been accused of stealing funds, while the union representatives have been jailaed a number of times.

    I believe that the current problem is a result of years of actions by the union and the fix will not occur in a short time.

    If you believe otherwise, please explain.
  14. siouxman

    siouxman siouxman

    Im 21 year teamster and I think our central states pension is in trouble.I have done some research on the plan and I see different numbers out there like the plan only has 55 cents for every dollar of liabilities.Our memership is droping. UPS is before congress right now trying to get benifit cuts passed.I dont think any emploeer in there right mind would join central states.The writing is on the wall, I feel that benifits will be cut ,the age of retirement will go up and we are going to pay a huge price for the poor performance of the fund.Whats the answer to this problem?We can blame the fund managers,the teamsters or who ever but lets fix the problem if its possible.The next contract this issue should be one everyones minds and make sure we ask the hard questins to our leadership.
  15. retiredone

    retiredone Member

    I guess the question is how to fix the plan given the circumstances you describe (whiich I agree with). IN MY OPINION ONLY, I don't think that UPS would be interested in taking responsibility as was offered in the 1997 negotiations. Frankly, the problem has simply gotten too large for UPS to take it on. One of the things I was told that happened after 1997 was that the Central States increased benefits (on a plan which was really incapable of paying the old benefits) to meet the benefit level promised by UPS during the negotiations. For this reason, what was bad got much worse. In one prior contract (many years ago), I think that the union essentially gave up on any significant wage increase and simply asked that the pension be made solvent through UPS contributions. Again, I have read rumblings on this site that "the company wants to take over the pension", but I don't think that the company wants the pension at this point. The problem has gotten too big.

    To be frank, I think the end game is a combination of all the above: increased retirement age, reduced benefits, putting the entire emphasis of any negotation on employer contributions to the plan. It's unfortunate that it's come to this.
  16. speeddemon

    speeddemon Guest

    You seem to forget, we never even got a chance to vote at the proposal in 97. The union does what it wants. UPS does what it wants, and we are screwed in the middle.
  17. retiredone

    retiredone Member

    I might be wrong, but I remember the situation differently and hope someone can post and explain. I do recall a strike authorization vote that was put to the rank and file early on in the discussions. The results of this vote were used as a negotiating tool by the Teamsters and eventually resulted in the strike to deny the proposed pension change. I also remember pickets protesting the "attempt by UPS to steal our pension money". I find it hard to believe that the rank and file had no voice in this and no control over the union. The control might be indirect like exerted by people on the government (we elect people who then act on our behalf - at least indirect control). Why vote for people who don't do what you want? Has there been a move to change union leadership given the pension problem?
  18. olebrownie

    olebrownie New Member

    You are right retiredone, there was a strike authorization vote. A small percentage of eligible teamsters voted. I guess it is just easier to blame everyone else than to take action.
    While the Teamster leadership painted a picture for the public that the strike was for part timers, the real issue was the pension monies all along. Past problems of fund mismanagement (without any UPS representation at the time) followed by market issues and combined with increased pensions promised by officials seeking election have put many of the pension funds in a precarious position. No company could afford to make the plans whole now, not even UPS with its deep pockets.
  19. 949 everyday

    949 everyday Guest

    forget about the pension. if you ever see it consider yourself lucky. treat it as a bonus. if you have grand illusions of retiring with a pension anything like what the current retirees in places like upstate ny get, you're setting yourself up for disappointment. the only thing you can control is how much you put in the 401k. Imagine how much better off a 30 year retiree would be today in the central states if all along his/her money was invested in a 401k or similiar plan. also, when you and your mouse die, you can leave it to your grandkids. My idea is forget the pension and forget the benies just pay me all of the money ups is giving the teamsters and ill take it from there.
  20. UPSBOI

    UPSBOI You don't want to know!

    You guys realize that in that strike authorization vote was a vote that had to be done in person at your local union hall in our case that's 140 miles away! That is why only a fraction even voted!