Many large companies like IBM and General Motors Corp. are struggling to meet their pension obligations to retirees. This problem can be traced to decreasing investment rates of return, which has shrunk the value of their corporate pension funds. Legislation introduced to Congress, known as the Portman-Cardin bill, would change the way pension liabilities are calculated by using long-term corporate bond returns. These proposed changes are criticized by some economists for not addressing the long-term problems of pension under funding.
See David R. Francis, The Christian Science Monitor, September 2, 2003