HUNTSVILLE, Ala., June 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Wolverine Tube, Inc. ("Wolverine") announced today that it will be initiating formal action with the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (the "PBGC") to terminate the Wolverine Tube, Inc. Retirement Plan (the "Plan") in what is known as a "distress termination". The Plan was frozen effective February 28, 2006 and future benefit accruals ceased as of that date. Wolverine's Board of Directors has determined that Wolverine can no longer afford the ongoing contributions necessary to maintain the Plan and, accordingly, Wolverine will be asking the PBGC to approve the termination of the Plan. Wolverine is hopeful that it will be able to work with the PBGC to resolve all Plan liabilities pursuant to terms that are acceptable to the PBGC and affordable for Wolverine.
The initial determination by the Plan's actuary is that under current PBGC guidelines, earned retirement benefits for almost all participants in the Plan would be fully guaranteed by the PBGC and not reduced as a result of the distress termination (this is subject to review and approval by the PBGC). Wolverine is communicating directly with all Plan participants regarding the termination action and the impact it may have on their benefits, if any.
"This action is a necessary step in the continued strengthening of Wolverine's capital structure and will allow available cash flow to be invested in its business and in job creation," said Harold Karp, President and Chief Operating Officer. "We are pleased that the PBGC guarantee program should be able to protect the full earned retirement benefits of as many of our current and former employees as possible."
ABOUT WOLVERINE TUBE, INC.
SOURCE Wolverine Tube, Inc.