The prospect of funding pensions

Reply Sat 1 May, 2010 10:01 pm
Please see this English text....

The prospect of funding pensions and training new workers will prevent companies from skewing toward a younger workforce.

'skewing' ----> ?

I get confused here . ..skewing = favorable or non-favorable ? which one is correct ? This seems have a varied meaning . what is the meaning in this context

Does the US Private companies pays pensions after retirement ? I know only the govt/federal staffs gets the pension after retirement ...but is it same for private company employees also ?
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Reply Sat 1 May, 2010 10:14 pm
Skewing, the way it is used here, means putting pressure on a decision. In this case, the company will not be actively looking for younger employees.

Many private companies have pension plans, but they are not required to unless it is part of a contract.

Reply Sun 2 May, 2010 12:43 am
I am not clear as to how its used here . I looked up wordwebonline

Verb: skew skyoo
Turn or place at an angle
Example: "the lines on the sheet of paper are skewed"

Here we have 'prevent from skewing' .....I can't match up this with the dictionary meaning.

Could you please elaborate this part ?
Reply Sun 2 May, 2010 12:49 am
Turn or place at an angle

Well, it is a change from the original plan. The original plan is skewed towards older workers.

It is kind of idiomatic. It would take a fairly large dictionary to cover such words. Anyway, your example is the way it is commonly used, if that helps.
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Reply Sun 2 May, 2010 10:42 am
Skew also means to deviate in a certain direction. It is a term used in statistics and distributional math. If you ask everyone in a class to pick a number from one to ten and the average comes out seven, you could say the numbers were skewed to the high side since you would expect the average to be five or six. In this case, the argument is that the high costs of training and benefits (retirement is a benefit) would cause companies to stay with older, more experienced employees instead of skewing to a younger workforce.


In the US, companies set money aside to be invested so that their employees will have retirement benefits when the time comes. If they don't, they could easily run out of money or go out of business leaving their employees with nothing. This setting aside of money is called "funding" the pension.
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