(08/30/2006)
Chemical manufacturer DuPont is changing its benefits plan to increase employee participation in its 401-k plan, decreasing dependence on its traditional pension plan.

Employees hired on or after January 2007 won't be eligible to participate in the pension plan and will not receive a company subsidy for retiree health care or retiree life insurance, according to a company news release.

The defined pension program for current employees will continue, but the calculation will be reduced to one-third of its current level for service accrued after 2007.

The company says beginning in 2008, it will match 100 percent of the first six percent of employee 401-k contributions, or double the current match.

DuPont says it'll ensure 100 percent 401 participation in the 401-k plan by contributing three percent of each worker's pay into each account.

The company-paid survivor benefit, provided through the pension plan, will not continue to grow with service or pay after December 31st, 2007.

DuPont says the changes will improve earnings by about three cents per share in 2007 and five cents beginning in 2008.

DuPont has plants in Belle and Washington, West Virginia.


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