MULTIEMPLOYER EMPLOYEE BENEFIT PLANS
|12 Months Ended|
Dec. 31, 2016
|Multiemployer Plans [Abstract]|
|MULTIEMPLOYER EMPLOYEE BENEFIT PLANS||
MULTIEMPLOYER EMPLOYEE BENEFIT PLANS
We contribute to a number of multiemployer defined benefit plans under the terms of collective bargaining agreements that cover our union-represented employees. These plans generally provide for retirement, death and/or termination benefits for eligible employees within the applicable collective bargaining units, based on specific eligibility/participation requirements, vesting periods and benefit formulas. The risks of participating in these multiemployer plans are different from single-employer plans in the following aspects:
The discussion that follows sets forth the financial impact on our results of operations and cash flows for the years ended December 31, 2016, 2015 and 2014 from our participation in multiemployer benefit plans. As part of the overall collective bargaining process for wage and benefit levels, we have agreed to contribute certain amounts to the multiemployer benefit plans during the contract period. The multiemployer benefit plans set benefit levels and are responsible for benefit delivery to participants. Future contribution amounts to multiemployer benefit plans are determined only through collective bargaining, and we have no additional legal or constructive obligation to increase contributions beyond the agreed-upon amounts (except potential surcharges under the Pension Protection Act of 2006 as described above).
The number of employees covered by our multiemployer pension plans has remained consistent over the past three years, and there have been no significant changes that affect the comparability of 2016, 2015 and 2014 contributions. We recognize expense for the contractually-required contribution for each period, and we recognize a liability for any contributions due and unpaid at the end of a reporting period.
Status of Collective Bargaining Agreements
As of December 31, 2016, we had approximately 268,000 employees employed under a national master agreement and various supplemental agreements with local unions affiliated with the Teamsters. During 2014, the Teamsters ratified a new national master agreement (“NMA”) with UPS that will expire on July 31, 2018. The economic provisions in the NMA included wage rate increases, as well as increased contribution rates for healthcare and pension benefits. Most of these economic provisions were retroactive to August 1, 2013, which was the effective date of the NMA. In 2014 and 2015, we remitted $278 and $53 million, respectively, for these retroactive economic benefits; this payment had an immaterial impact on net income, as these retroactive economic benefits had been accrued since the July 31, 2013 expiration of the prior agreement.
In addition to the retroactive economic provisions of the NMA, there were certain changes to the delivery of healthcare benefits that were effective at various dates. These changes impact approximately 36,000 full-time and 73,000 part-time active employees covered by the NMA and the UPS Freight collective bargaining agreement (collectively referred to as the “NMA Group”), as well as approximately 16,000 employees covered by other collective bargaining agreements (the “Non-NMA Group”). These provisions are discussed further below in the "Changes to the Delivery of Active and Postretirement Healthcare Benefits" section.
We have approximately 2,600 pilots who are employed under a collective bargaining agreement with the Independent Pilots Association ("IPA"), which became amendable at the end of 2011. On August 31, 2016, the IPA members voted to ratify a new five-year labor contract. Terms of the agreement became effective September 1, 2016 and run through September 1, 2021. The economic provisions in the agreement included pay increases, a signing bonus and enhanced pension benefits.
Our airline mechanics are covered by a collective bargaining agreement with Teamsters Local 2727, which became amendable November 1, 2013. We are currently in negotiations with Teamsters Local 2727. In addition, approximately 3,000 of our auto and maintenance mechanics who are not employed under agreements with the Teamsters are employed under collective bargaining agreements with the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (“IAM”) that will expire on July 31, 2019.
Multiemployer Pension Plans
The following table outlines our participation in multiemployer pension plans for the periods ended December 31, 2016, 2015 and 2014, and sets forth our calendar year contributions and accruals for each plan. The “EIN/Pension Plan Number” column provides the Employer Identification Number (“EIN”) and the three-digit plan number. The most recent Pension Protection Act zone status available in 2016 and 2015 relates to the plans’ two most recent fiscal year-ends. The zone status is based on information that we received from the plans’ administrators and is certified by each plan’s actuary. Among other factors, plans certified in the red zone are generally less than 65% funded, plans certified in the orange zone are both less than 80% funded and have an accumulated funding deficiency or are expected to have a deficiency in any of the next six plan years, plans certified in the yellow zone are less than 80% funded, and plans certified in the green zone are at least 80% funded. The “FIP/RP Status Pending/Implemented” column indicates whether a financial improvement plan (“FIP”) for yellow/orange zone plans, or a rehabilitation plan (“RP”) for red zone plans, is either pending or has been implemented. As of December 31, 2016, all plans that have either a FIP or RP requirement have had the respective FIP or RP implemented.
Our collectively-bargained contributions satisfy the requirements of all implemented FIPs and RPs and do not currently require the payment of any surcharges. In addition, minimum contributions outside of the agreed upon contractual rate are not required. For the plans detailed in the following table, the expiration date of the associated collective bargaining agreements is July 31, 2018, with the exception of the Automotive Industries Pension Plan and the IAM National Pension Fund / National Pension Plan which both have a July 31, 2019 expiration date. For all plans detailed in the following table, we provided more than 5% of the total plan contributions from all employers for 2016, 2015 and 2014 (as disclosed in the Form 5500 for each respective plan).
Certain plans have been aggregated in the “all other multiemployer pension plans” line in the following table, as the contributions to each of these individual plans were not material.
Agreement with the New England Teamsters and Trucking Industry Pension Fund
In 2012, we reached an agreement with the New England Teamsters and Trucking Industry Pension Fund ("NETTI Fund"), a multiemployer pension plan in which UPS is a participant, to restructure the pension liabilities for approximately 10,200 UPS employees represented by the Teamsters. As of December 31, 2016 and 2015, we had $866 and $872 million, respectively, recognized in "other non-current liabilities" on our consolidated balance sheets representing the remaining balance of the NETTI Fund withdrawal liability. Based on the borrowing rates currently available to the Company for long-term financing of a similar maturity, the fair value of the NETTI Fund withdrawal liability as of December 31, 2016 and 2015 was $861 and $841 million. We utilized Level 2 inputs in the fair value hierarchy of valuation techniques to determine the fair value of this liability.
Multiemployer Health and Welfare Plans
We also contribute to several multiemployer health and welfare plans that cover both active and retired employees. Health care benefits are provided to participants who meet certain eligibility requirements as covered under the applicable collective bargaining unit. The following table sets forth our calendar year plan contributions and accruals. Certain plans have been aggregated in the “all other multiemployer health and welfare plans” line in the table, as the contributions to each of these individual plans are not material.
The increases in 2015 contributions to the Central States, South East & South West Areas Health and Welfare Fund and to the Teamsters Western Region & Local 177 Health Care Plan are related to the changes to the delivery of active and postretirement healthcare benefits described below.
Changes to the Delivery of Active and Postretirement Healthcare Benefits
Prior to ratification, the NMA Group and Non-NMA Group employees received their healthcare benefits through UPS-sponsored active and postretirement health and welfare benefit plans. Effective June 1, 2014, we ceased providing healthcare benefits to active NMA Group employees through these UPS-sponsored benefit plans, and the responsibility for providing healthcare benefits for active employees was assumed by three separate multiemployer healthcare funds (the “Funds”). The responsibility for providing healthcare benefits for the active Non-NMA Group employees was also assumed by the Funds on various dates up to January 1, 2015, depending on the ratification date of the applicable collective bargaining agreement. We will make contributions to the Funds based on negotiated fixed hourly or monthly contribution rates for the duration of the NMA and other applicable collective bargaining agreements.
Additionally, the Funds assumed the obligation to provide postretirement healthcare benefits to the employees in the NMA Group who retire on or after January 1, 2014. The postretirement healthcare benefit obligation for the employees in the Non-NMA Group was assumed by the Funds for employees retiring on or after January 1, 2014 or January 1, 2015, depending on the applicable collective bargaining agreement. In exchange for the assumption of the obligation to provide postretirement healthcare benefits to the NMA Group and Non-NMA Group, we transferred cash totaling $2.271 billion to the Funds in the second quarter of 2014. UPS-sponsored health and welfare benefit plans retained responsibility for providing postretirement healthcare coverage for employees in the NMA Group who retired from UPS prior to January 1, 2014, and for employees in the Non-NMA Group who retired from UPS prior to the January 1, 2014 or January 1, 2015 effective date in the applicable collective bargaining agreement.
Accounting Impact of Health and Welfare Plan Changes
Income Statement Impact:
We recorded a pre-tax charge of $1.066 billion ($665 million after-tax) in the second quarter of 2014 for the health and welfare plan changes described above. The components of this charge, which was included in "compensation and benefits" expense in the statement of consolidated income, are as follows:
We recorded an additional pre-tax charge of $36 million ($22 million after-tax) in the fourth quarter of 2014 upon ratification of the collective bargaining agreements covering the Non-NMA Group, related to the remeasurement and settlement of the postretirement benefit obligation associated with those employees.
Balance Sheet and Cash Flow Impact:
During 2014, as part of the health and welfare plan changes described previously, we transferred cash totaling $2.271 billion to the Funds, which was accounted for as a settlement of our postretirement benefit obligations. We received approximately $854 million of cash tax benefits (through reduced U.S. Federal and state quarterly income tax payments) in 2014.
For NMA Group employees who retired prior to January 1, 2014 and remained with the UPS-sponsored health and welfare plans, the changes to the contributions, benefits and cost sharing provisions in these plans resulted in an increase in the postretirement benefit obligation and a corresponding decrease in pre-tax AOCI of $13 million upon ratification.