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Business

Commerzbank Cuts Pension Contributions

As part of its ongoing effort to cut costs, Germany’s fourth largest bank, Commerzbank, announced Tuesday it was cancelling the voluntary corporate pension scheme of more than 22,000 employers. Effective as of 2005, the company will no longer pay contributions on behalf of these employees, who would have received it as a lump sum after retirement. Stefan Roberg, a Commerzbank representative, made the announcement in Düsseldorf, thereby confirming numerous press reports. The cuts are expected to help the troubled institution rack up savings in the tens of millions. This is the latest in a series of measures – earlier this year the bank announced it would eliminate 7,400 positions. Trade union officials, including Verdi, the service workers trade union, denounced the action, calling it a “rupture in the company’s corporate culture.” They also pointed out that the company’s top executives would not be affected.