Eastman Kodak Co. will be looking for a single investment manager to manage $500 million in Kodak stock once the company buys it back from investors. The contribution is part of a $1 billion stock buyback plan announced earlier this month. A Kodak spokesman said the company hasn't set a deadline yet to hire a new manager. The spokesman would not speculate on the limitations the manager would have in selling the stock. This is the first contribution the company has made to the $5.3 billion fund since 1982. The contribution puts the fund just under the 10% stock limit pension funds are allowed to hold in company securities; Kodak's pension fund does not hold any other company stock, the spokesman said.
Most domestic bond market managers, academics and consultants are encouraged by what they consider meaningful progress toward a balanced federal budget. They believe congressional deficit reduction proposals will set the stage for a continuation of the bond market rally. The bond market has soared since January after suffering a dismal year in 1994. Bond market experts say fiscal restraint in the new federal budget should lead to lower interest rates, a slow growth economy and low inflation all of which are good for the bond market. John C. ``Jack'' Bogle, chairman and CEO of the Vanguard Group, has entered a hospital to receive cardiac treatment and await a heart transplant. Mr. Bogle, 66, has been undergoing care for a congenital heart defect for more than 30 years and decided to pursue a transplant based on the recommendations of cardiologists. He entered the hospital Oct. 19 for preliminary testing and was found to be a suitable candidate for transplant.The waiting period to receive a transplant is indeterminate and could be several months or more. Some 92% of companies offer salary reduction plans, 75% of which are 401(k)s, a Coopers & Lybrand survey of 217 companies shows. The survey on the most frequently offered employee benefits also found defined benefit plans were most popular with large companies, particularly in the utilities and financial services industries. But only 35% of the smaller companies offer them.Only 22% of companies in the retail sector use defined benefit plans. Jane Fuersich, national director of Coopers & Lybrand's compensation consulting practice, said 401(k) plans may be more suitable for the retail industry ``because of the high turnover in employees and the need for portability of pension benefits for maintaining potential retirement income.'' Among other employee benefits, 49% of companies offer retiree health coverage, 20% offer profit-sharing plans, 13% offer employee stock purchase plans and 12% offer employee stock ownership plans. Women, on average, are less likely to have adequate retirement income than men, and are less inclined to participate in a 401(k) plan, Assistant Secretary of Labor Olena Berg said this week. Speaking at the Small Business Forum's Women and Pensions seminar in Washington, Ms. Berg said that in 1993, 39% of female and 46% of male private wage and salary workers were covered by pension plans. And, 62% of female and 70% of male workers participated in a 401(k) plan when offered one. But she noted some encouraging trends, such as the 48% coverage rate in private pension plans for full-time female workers, and the 40% coverage rate among women who are under 36 and are full-time private and salary workers. The median Canadian balanced fund earned a 2.1% return for the quarter ended Sept. 30 and 11.7% for the year ended Sept. 30, according to SEI Financial Services in Toronto. Canadian investment managers outpaced major indexes for Canadian stocks, foreign stocks and bonds for the year, SEI said. But in the third quarter, 80% of active bond mangers in Canada underperformed the Scotia McLeod Universe Bond Index, and the majority of Canadian equity managers underperformed the Toronto Stock Exchange 300 Index. But managers fared better in non-Canadian stock markets, when 70% of active investment managers outperformed the Morgan Stanley Capital International World Index, said an SEI report.