UK - HSBC has made a £1.7bn (€2.2bn) contribution to its underfunded defined benefit (DB) pension scheme in an effort to reduce an almost £3bn deficit.

The company's annual report states that the bank's UK DB scheme saw its deficit fall to $495m (€405m) after ballooning to $3.8bn at the end of last year.

The bank had previously agreed payments of £465m annually between 2012 and 2014 to combat HSBC Bank (UK) Pension Scheme's deficit, increasing payments to £630m between 2015 and 2018.

Instead, the special payment of £1.7bn was agreed.

The funds were used to acquire debt securities by the scheme.

The report said: "The debt securities sold comprised supranational, agency and government-guaranteed securities, asset-backed securities, corporate subordinated debt and auction rate securities.

"The contribution, together with an actuarial gain on plan assets of $986m, helped achieve a reduction in the net liability of the scheme from $3,822 million at 31 December 2009 to $495m at 30 June 2010."

HSBC will now pay a further £495m into the scheme in 2016 and a total of £1.26bn over the following two years.

In other news, the City of Edinburgh is tendering for a custodian for the £2.3bn Lothian Pension Fund.

The tender notice, for overseas and UK gilts custody services as well as securities lending services, asks for specific details of any applying company.

These include the average number of staff and managerial staff over the past three years, as well as the educational background of anyone involved with the pension fund once a company is hired.

It also request a statement of principal goods.

Edinburgh asks for details of the sale, what kind of consideration is given prior to the sale and who makes the final purchase.

Additionally, all applicants are asked to outline which aspects of responsibility would be subcontracted to different providers upon award.

Custodial services are currently supplied by Citibank, with the contract expiring at the end of the year.

Edinburgh is tendering a six-year contract, with an option of renewing it for a further three years.

All applications should be received by 24 September, with additional information available from the council.