Boeing seeks to lower cost of pensions

From Times Wire Services

Boeing Co. proposed putting newly hired machinists in a 401(k)-style retirement plan to ease a pension liability it estimates at $46 billion.

The company's machinists union has said it opposes the proposal, among the most significant concessions Boeing sought as it opened formal talks on a new three-year labor contract. The 26,000 machinists now get a defined-benefit pension that guarantees a portion of their income in retirement.

Chicago-based Boeing also wants to restructure machinists' top wage rates, which it says exceed market averages, and reduce healthcare costs.

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