[Federal Register: July 15, 2004 (Volume 69, Number 135)]

[Notices]               

[Page 42470-42471]

From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]

[DOCID:fr15jy04-105]                         



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PENSION BENEFIT GUARANTY CORPORATION



 

Required Interest Rate Assumption for Determining Variable-Rate 

Premium; Interest on Late Premium Payments; Interest on Underpayments 

and Overpayments of Single-Employer Plan Termination Liability and 

Multiemployer Withdrawal Liability; Interest Assumptions for 

Multiemployer Plan Valuations Following Mass Withdrawal



AGENCY: Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.



ACTION: Notice of interest rates and assumptions.



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SUMMARY: This notice informs the public of the interest rates and 

assumptions to be used under certain Pension Benefit Guaranty 

Corporation regulations. These rates and assumptions are published 

elsewhere (or can be derived from rates published elsewhere), but are 

collected and published in this notice for the convenience of the 

public. Interest rates are also published on the PBGC's Web site 

(http://www.pbgc.gov).





DATES: The required interest rate for determining the variable-rate 

premium under part 4006 applies to premium payment years beginning in 

July 2004. The interest assumptions for performing multiemployer plan 

valuations following mass withdrawal under part 4281 apply to valuation 

dates occurring in August 2004. The interest rates for late premium 

payments under part 4007 and for underpayments and overpayments of 

single-employer plan termination liability under part 4062 and 

multiemployer withdrawal liability under part 4219 apply to interest 

accruing during the third quarter (July through September) of 2004.



FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Harold J. Ashner, Assistant General 

Counsel, Office of the General Counsel, Pension Benefit Guaranty 

Corporation, 1200 K Street, NW., Washington, DC 20005, 202-326-4024. 

(TTY/TDD users may call the Federal relay service toll-free at 1-800-

877-8339 and ask to be connected to 202-326-4024.)



SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 



Variable-Rate Premiums



    Section 4006(a)(3)(E)(iii)(II) of the Employee Retirement Income 

Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) and Sec.  4006.4(b)(1) of the PBGC's 

regulation on Premium Rates (29 CFR part 4006) prescribe use of an 

assumed interest rate (the ``required interest rate'') in determining a 

single-employer plan's variable-rate premium. Pursuant to the Pension 

Funding Equity Act of 2004, for premium payment years beginning in 2004 

or 2005, the required interest rate is the ``applicable percentage'' 

(currently 85 percent) of the annual rate of interest determined by the 

Secretary of the Treasury on amounts invested conservatively in long-

term investment grade corporate bonds for the month preceding the 

beginning of the plan year for which premiums are being paid. Thus, the 

required interest rate to be used in determining variable-rate premiums 

for premium payment years beginning in July 2004 is 5.25 percent (i.e., 

85 percent of the 6.18 percent composite corporate bond rate for June 

2004 as determined by the Treasury).

    The following table lists the required interest rates to be used in 

determining variable-rate premiums for premium payment years beginning 

between August 2003 and July 2004. Note that the required interest 

rates for premium payment years beginning in August through December 

2003 were determined under the Job Creation and Worker Assistance Act 

of 2002, and that the required interest rates for premium payment years 

beginning in January through July 2004 were determined under the 

Pension Funding Equity Act of 2004.



------------------------------------------------------------------------

                                                                  The

                                                                required

            For premium payment years beginning in              interest

                                                                rate is

------------------------------------------------------------------------

August 2003*.................................................       4.93

September 2003*..............................................       5.31

October 2003*................................................       5.14

November 2003*...............................................       5.16

December 2003*...............................................       5.12



[[Page 42471]]





January 2004**...............................................       4.94

February 2004**..............................................       4.83

March 2004**.................................................       4.79

April 2004**.................................................       4.62

May 2004**...................................................       4.98

June 2004**..................................................       5.26

July 2004**..................................................       5.25

------------------------------------------------------------------------

\*\ The required interest rates for premium payment years beginning in

  August through December 2003 were determined under the Job Creation

  and Worker Assistance Act of 2002.

\**\ The required interest rates for premium payment years beginning in

  January through July 2004 were determined under the Pension Funding

  Equity Act of 2004.



Late Premium Payments; Underpayments and Overpayments of Single-

Employer Plan Termination Liability



    Section 4007(b) of ERISA and Sec.  4007.7(a) of the PBGC's 

regulation on Payment of Premiums (29 CFR part 4007) require the 

payment of interest on late premium payments at the rate established 

under section 6601 of the Internal Revenue Code. Similarly, Sec.  

4062.7 of the PBGC's regulation on Liability for Termination of Single-

Employer Plans (29 CFR part 4062) requires that interest be charged or 

credited at the section 6601 rate on underpayments and overpayments of 

employer liability under section 4062 of ERISA. The section 6601 rate 

is established periodically (currently quarterly) by the Internal 

Revenue Service. The rate applicable to the third quarter (July through 

September) of 2004, as announced by the IRS, is 4 percent.

    The following table lists the late payment interest rates for 

premiums and employer liability for the specified time periods:



------------------------------------------------------------------------

                                                                Interest

                    From--                        Through--       rate

                                                               (percent)

------------------------------------------------------------------------

4/1/98.......................................        12/31/98          8

1/1/99.......................................         3/31/99          7

4/1/99.......................................         3/31/00          8

4/1/00.......................................         3/31/01          9

4/1/01.......................................         6/30/01          8

7/1/01.......................................        12/31/01          7

1/1/02.......................................        12/31/02          6

1/1/03.......................................         9/30/03          5

10/1/03......................................         3/31/04          4

4/1/04.......................................         6/30/04          5

7/1/04.......................................         9/30/04          4

------------------------------------------------------------------------



Underpayments and Overpayments of Multiemployer Withdrawal Liability



    Section 4219.32(b) of the PBGC's regulation on Notice, Collection, 

and Redetermination of Withdrawal Liability (29 CFR part 4219) 

specifies the rate at which a multiemployer plan is to charge or credit 

interest on underpayments and overpayments of withdrawal liability 

under section 4219 of ERISA unless an applicable plan provision 

provides otherwise. For interest accruing during any calendar quarter, 

the specified rate is the average quoted prime rate on short-term 

commercial loans for the fifteenth day (or the next business day if the 

fifteenth day is not a business day) of the month preceding the 

beginning of the quarter, as reported by the Board of Governors of the 

Federal Reserve System in Statistical Release H.15 (``Selected Interest 

Rates''). The rate for the third quarter (July through September) of 

2004 (i.e., the rate reported for June 15, 2004) is 4.00 percent.

    The following table lists the withdrawal liability underpayment and 

overpayment interest rates for the specified time periods:



------------------------------------------------------------------------

                                                                Interest

                     From                          Through        rate

                                                               (percent)

------------------------------------------------------------------------

7/1/97.......................................        12/31/98       8.50

1/1/99.......................................         9/30/99       7.75

10/1/99......................................        12/31/99       8.25

1/1/00.......................................         3/31/00       8.50

4/1/00.......................................         6/30/00       8.75

7/1/00.......................................         3/31/01       9.50

4/1/01.......................................         6/30/01       8.50

7/1/01.......................................         9/30/01       7.00

10/1/01......................................        12/31/01       6.50

1/1/02.......................................        12/31/02       4.75

1/1/03.......................................         9/30/03       4.25

10/1/03......................................         9/30/04       4.00

------------------------------------------------------------------------



Multiemployer Plan Valuations Following Mass Withdrawal



    The PBGC's regulation on Duties of Plan Sponsor Following Mass 

Withdrawal (29 CFR part 4281) prescribes the use of interest 

assumptions under the PBGC's regulation on Allocation of Assets in 

Single-Employer Plans (29 CFR part 4044). The interest assumptions 

applicable to valuation dates in August 2004 under part 4044 are 

contained in an amendment to part 4044 published elsewhere in today's 

Federal Register. Tables showing the assumptions applicable to prior 

periods are codified in appendix B to 29 CFR part 4044.



    Issued in Washington, DC, on this 9th day of July, 2004.

Joseph H. Grant,

Deputy Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer, Pension Benefit 

Guaranty Corporation.

[FR Doc. 04-16003 Filed 7-14-04; 8:45 am]



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