Chrysler freezes pension plan for 8,000 employees

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By The Associated Press, Associated Press

Chrysler Group LLC says it is freezing the pension of roughly 8,000 U.S. salaried employees at the end of the year.

The U.S. automaker says it is making the move to stay in line with industry trends and to comply with IRS regulations. Companies in general have moved away from traditional pensions due to the cost. General Motors made a similar move last year.

Chrysler's affected employees will be shifted to a defined contribution plan. It also lowered the age at which employees can begin claiming all of their retirement savings to 58 from 62.

The company closed its pension plans to new participants at the start of 2004. The freeze does not affect those hired from that point forward, or those who have already left the company or retired.

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