As the calendar turned from 2017 to 2018, we observed a strongequity market rally, the most significant overhaul of the corporatetax system in a generation, and a strong economy withsimultaneously low unemployment and low inflation. We also observedrising interest rates coupled with a new Federal Reserve chairmanappointed by President Trump. And, early in the year, weexperienced significant capital market volatility.

Many pension plans in the United States have emerged from thiseconomic environment with improved funded status. In fact, theaggregate funded status of pensions at the nation's largestcompanies is currently at its highest level since 2013. (See Figure1, below.)

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