Warburtons and the Bakers Food and Allied Workers Union (BFAWU) have reached a pay agreement following the threat of strike action.The union, which called off planned strike action before Christmas over what it saw as a low pay offer, confirmed on 11 January that an agreement had been reached.No pay figure was available but Warburtons described it as “an extremely competitive offer in the context of the food industry” and pronounced themselves pleased with the resolution of the dispute.
In response to the recent events in their hometown of Charlottesville, VA, Dave Matthews Band will host an evening of music and unity that will be FREE for members of the Charlottesville and University of Virginia communities through an online request process. The event – produced by Live Nation, Starr Hill Presents and the University of Virginia – will take place on Sunday, September 24, at UVA’s Scott Stadium in Charlottesville.“A Concert for Charlottesville” will feature Dave Matthews Band, Pharrell Williams, Justin Timberlake, Chris Stapleton, Ariana Grande, Brittany Howard of Alabama Shakes, The Roots, Cage the Elephant, and special guests.While tickets are free, attendees are encouraged to make a donation to the “Concert for Charlottesville Fund” at the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation. Beneficiaries of the fund will include victims of the events in Charlottesville on August 11 and 12, and their families, first responders, and organizations devoted to the promotion of healing, unity and justice locally and nationwide. Donations can be made here.Tickets will be allocated initially to residents of the greater Charlottesville area, and also to UVA students, faculty and staff. An online ticket request period is currently underway here and will end on Monday, September 11, at Noon ET. A limited number of tickets will also be available at a walk-up, no service charge box office at John Paul Jones Arena on Friday, September 15, at 10AM ET. All information can be found here.
UK defined benefit (DB) scheme sponsors could be sitting on a £260bn (€290bn) accounting black hole, a new study from consultants XPS Group has warned. The accounting gap demonstrated what XPS referred to as the growing difference between “accounting balance sheets and future long-term targets”.Wayne Segers, head of transactions at XPS, said: “The Pensions Regulator is already expecting trustees and employers to set long-term funding targets, which will drive a greater difference between accounting and the cost of pensions.“Accounting disclosures will be an ever more important window in helping to explain this gap and good pension disclosures can help allay concerns around pension contributions and set out a clear path for managing pension risk.” In its 2017 Thematic Review, the UK audit watchdog, the Financial Reporting Council, emphasised the usefulness of DB sponsors not only presenting but also explaining alternative valuations to the accounting measure in their accounts.On other key accounting assumptions, the XPS study broadly confirmed the findings of comparable studies this year from advisers KPMG and Lane Clark Peacock LLP.In relation to discounting, XPS said UK sponsors used an average discount rate of 2.8% during 2018, across a range of 2.6% to 3.1%.The consultancy added that schemes with a rate in excess of 2.85% were likely using a non-standard approach to discounting.On life expectancy, XPS discovered that some 82% of DB schemes had updated their assumptions to take account of the recent slowdown in the rate of longevity improvement.Finally, the XPS survey supported the view that the cost of implementing last year’s equality ruling had turned out to be lower than initially feared.In October, the High Court in London ruled that employers must grant equal “guaranteed minimum pension” (GMP) payments accrued between 1990 and 1997 to both male and female workers.XPS’s analysis showed that the cost of implementing the GMP ruling for most of the schemes in its sample was less than 1% of liabilities.The XPS Group survey was based on an analysis of 150 of the firm’s clients preparing accounts under a range of different financial reporting regimes including International Financial Reporting Standards.