Verizon Communications Inc., Basking Ridge, N.J., plans to contribute up to $1.26 billion in cash to its pension plans in 2012, the company said Tuesday in a fourth-quarter earnings call.
The amount is more than three times the $400 million the company contributed in 2011.
Francis “Fran” J. Shammo, CFO, noted the contributions will be made “more or less smoothly” during the year, with $400 million in contributions during the first and third quarters, and the remainder spread evenly during the second and fourth quarters.
The company also noted during the call that it earned a 5% return on pension assets during the year; its assumed rate of return is 8%.
According to Pensions & Investments data, Verizon's U.S. defined benefit plan assets totaled $23.7 billion as of Sept. 30. The DB asset allocation is 31.3% equities; 22.8% private equity; 17.7% fixed income; 14% alternatives; 10.4% real estate; and 3.8% cash and other.