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Pensions fall short

THE majority of defined benefit pension schemes are falling behind meeting funding standards with a total estimated deficit of €8bn.

Less than two years ago, the Pensions Board suggested about 1,000 defined benefit schemes were in existence but Irish Life & Permanent said there were now fewer than 900.

Chief executive of Irish Life Corporate Business David Harney (above) said the industry "simply can't stand still".

Irish Life is to launch the first sovereign annuity product on the Irish pensions market, using National Treasury Management Agency bonds.