Figures from PwC’s Skyval Index show the deficit of UK defined benefit (DB) pension funds stood at £220bn ($277bn) at the end of June 2019 – down £20bn ($25bn) from the previous month. 

PwC’s Skyval Index, based on the Skyval platform used by pension funds, provides an aggregate health check of the UK’s c.5,450 corporate DB pension funds. The reduction in the funding gap follows a £60bn increase in the deficit during May which came after an £80bn drop in the previous month. 

The current Skyval Index figures, based on the 'gilts plus' method widely used by scheme actuaries, show total assets of £1.69trn ($2.13trn) and liabilities of £1.91trn ($2.4trn).

PwC’s chief actuary Steven Dicker said: “The small improvement in the deficit has been mostly driven by positive performance in equity markets over the month. Overall, however, the yo-yo trend of recent months is largely a reflection of funds treading water as geopolitical and economic issues continue to rumble on.”