The funded status of the Group’s pension benefit obligations, defined as the difference between the present value of the pension obligations and the fair value of pension plan assets, amounts to minus €8.6 billion at December 31, 2013, compared with minus €9.7 billion at December 31, 2012. At December 31, 2012, the present value of the Group’s pension obligations amounted to €23.2 billion, compared with €23.9 billion a year earlier. The decrease resulted primarily from the increase in discount rates, especially for the German and US plans. As a result, actuarial losses from defined benefit pension plans, which are recognized in equity under retained earnings, decreased by €1.3 billion before taxes. The plan assets available to finance the pension obligations increased from €14.2 billion to €14.7 billion at December 31, 2013.
Further information on the effects on the statement of financial position and the statement of income as well as on pensions and similar obligations is provided in Note 1 and Note 22 respectively of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements.