A Ford filing has surfaced that shows that the automaker intends to contribute a huge amount of money to its non-U.S. pension plans in 2020. The 10-K filing shows that Ford intends to contribute between $600 million and $800 million during 2020. Ford doesn’t intend to contribute to its major U.S. pension plans in 2020.
Ford contributed $789 million to its non-U.S. pension plans in 2019. It contributed $284 million to the U.S. plans in 2019. That was an increase in contribution to the U.S. plan compared to 2018 that totaled $140 million. The total assets in the U.S. plan as of December 31, 2019, were $44.6 billion, with projected obligations of $45.7 billion.
The assets in the non-U.S. plans totaled $30 billion, with projected obligations of $35.4 billion. Ford took a massive loss on pension plans outside the U.S. to the tune of $2.2 billion in 2019. There was a change in the discount rate used to determine benefit obligations with U.S. plans declining to 3.3 percent in 2019, from 4.3 percent used in 2018. The rate for non-U.S. pension plans declined to 1.7 percent from 2.5 percent the previous year.
When Ford announced the major loss on pension plans last quarter, it noted that it would not change its expectations for pension contributions in 2020. Ford had a rough 2019 all around the world, with declining sales in many areas and growing expenses. The automaker took a loss in Q4 2019 of $700 million, mostly due to the large ratification bonuses that were handed out to UAW members after the contract was approved. Full-time workers received $9,000, and temporary workers received $3,500.