Kimberly-Clark Corp., Dallas, contributed $200 million to its pension plans in 2004, up from $181.9 million in 2003, according to a 10-K filing. A "significant level" of cash from last year enabled the company to contribute $100 million to its U.S. defined benefit plan in December, a payment that had originally been planned for 2005, Kimberly-Clark said. "While the corporation is not required to make a contribution in 2005 to the U.S. plan, the benefit of an additional contribution will be evaluated." The company will contribute about $38 million this year to its international plans.
The company will also lower its long-term rate of return on fund assets to 8.29% in 2005, from 8.32% in 2004 and 8.42% in 2003. It expects a 2005 consolidated pension expense of $160 million. The company reported total retirement assets of $5.08 billion as of Sept. 30.