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PBGC takes over Collins & Aikman pension plan


WASHINGTON--The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. is taking over a pension plan sponsored by bankrupt auto parts manufacturer Collins & Aikman Corp.

The Collins & Aikman plan, which has about 21,000 participants, is 58% funded, with $434 million in liabilities and $253 million in assets. The PBGC expects to be liable for about $161 million of the $181 million funding shortfall.

Assumption of the plan on the PBGC's balance sheet as an estimate of the liability was included in the PBGC's fiscal 2006 financial statements.

The PBGC said it is taking over the plan because Troy, Mich.-based Collins & Aikman already has missed making $7.6 million in required contributions and the plan will be abandoned when the company sells off its assets, as contemplated in its bankruptcy proceedings.

Collins & Aikman filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy nearly two years ago. A confirmation hearing of the company's liquidation plan of reorganization is scheduled for April 19 in federal bankruptcy court.