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News & Policy

PBGC to Protect Benefits of 2,000 Workers Covered by Goldman Group Inc. Pension Plans

June 10, 2003

The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) today announced it will assume responsibility for three underfunded pension plans sponsored by bankrupt Goldman Group Inc., a Boston-based holding company that had operations mainly in chemicals and machine tool manufacturing.

"PBGC has stepped in because Goldman Group is liquidating and the pension plans do not have enough money to pay all benefits," said PBGC Executive Director Steven A. Kandarian. "The PBGC insurance program will protect basic pension benefits earned by more than 2,000 workers. Retirees will continue to receive their monthly checks up to legal limits, and others will receive benefits when they become eligible to retire."

The Goldman Group Inc. Retirement Plan mostly covers former salaried employees of Goldman Group Inc.; Hall Chemical Co., Wickliffe, Ohio; and Bryant Grinder Corp., Fellows Corp., Jones & Lamson Vermont Corp. and Jones & Lamson Metrology Corp., all based in North Springfield, Vt. Goldman Group also sponsored the Bryant Grinder Corp. Pension Plan for Hourly Rate Employees and The Fellows Corp. Hourly Plan. Together, the three plans are underfunded by about $42 million, according to PBGC estimates. The agency will take over the plans' assets and use PBGC insurance funds to pay guaranteed pension benefits of covered workers.

The Goldman Group plan was terminated as of Sept. 9, 2002, and the Bryant Grinder and Fellows plans were terminated as of May 31, 2002. Under federal pension law, the maximum pension guaranteed for workers in plans that terminated in 2002 is $3,579 a month (or $42,954 a year) for persons retiring at age 65. Maximum guarantees are adjusted for retirees older or younger than age 65 and for those who choose survivor benefits.

Workers and retirees do not need to take any action. Those who have questions or wish to retire may contact the PBGC Customer Service Center toll-free at 1-800-400-7242. For TTY/TDD users, call the federal relay service toll-free at 1-800-877-8339 and ask to be connected to 800-400-7242.

Goldman Group also had facilities in Arab, Ala., Bridgeport, Conn. and Gorham, Me.

PBGC is a federal corporation created under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974. It currently guarantees payment of basic pension benefits earned by 44 million American workers and retirees participating in over 32,500 private-sector defined benefit pension plans. The agency receives no funds from general tax revenues. Operations are financed largely by insurance premiums paid by companies that sponsor pension plans and by PBGC's investment returns.

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PBGC No. 03-39