Net pension cost in 2015 was $14 million and was allocated to cost of products sold and operating expenses based on salaries and wages. At December 25, 2015, a one-half percentage point decrease in the indicated assumptions would have the following effects (in millions):
Expected return on assets
Recent Accounting Pronouncements
Effective at the end of 2015, the Company adopted ASU 2015-17, Balance Sheet Classification of Deferred Taxes, which requires all deferred tax assets and liabilities to be classified as non-current. Balances as of December 26, 2014 were restated to conform with 2015 classification, resulting in decreases in previously reported 2014 current assets and liabilities of $20 million and $2 million, respectively, with corresponding increases in non-current deferred tax assets and liabilities.
Effective for 2015, the Company adopted ASU 2015-04, which allows for the measurement of defined benefit retirement obligations and related plan assets as of the calendar month-end that is closest to the plan sponsor’s fiscal year-end. For 2015, the Company measured all plan obligations and assets as of December 31, 2015.
In May 2014, the Financial Accounting Standards Board issued a final standard on revenue from contracts with customers. The new standard sets forth a single comprehensive model for recognizing and reporting revenue. The new standard is effective for the Company in its fiscal year 2018 and permits the use of either a retrospective or a cumulative effect transition method. The Company is evaluating the effect of the new standard on its consolidated financial statements and related disclosures, and has not yet selected a transition method.
Item 7A. Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk
The Company sells and purchases products and services in currencies other than the U.S. dollar and pays variable interest rates on borrowings under certain credit facilities. Consequently, the Company is subject to profitability risk arising from exchange and interest rate movements. The Company may use a variety of financial and derivative instruments to manage foreign currency and interest rate risks. The Company does not enter into any of these instruments for trading purposes to generate revenue. Rather, the Company’s objective in managing these risks is to reduce fluctuations in earnings and cash flows associated with changes in foreign currency exchange and interest rates.
The Company may use forward exchange contracts, options and other hedging activities to hedge the U.S. dollar value resulting from anticipated currency transactions and net monetary asset and liability positions. At December 25, 2015, the currencies to which the Company had the most significant balance sheet exchange rate exposure were the euro, Swiss franc, Canadian dollar, British pound, Japanese yen, Australian dollar, Chinese yuan renminbi and South Korean won. It is not possible to determine the true impact of currency rate changes; however, the direct translation effect on net sales and net earnings can be estimated. In 2015, changes in currency translation rates reduced sales and earnings by approximately $58 million and $20 million, respectively. In 2014, changes in currency translation rates reduced sales and earnings by approximately $3 million and $2 million, respectively. Changes in translation rates had no significant effect on 2013 net sales or earnings.
We continue to invest for long-term growth in our new product development, geographic expansion and market expansion initiatives. As we enter 2016, we are cautiously optimistic that our growth initiatives and end market exposure will help us achieve our outlook of low single digit organic constant currency sales growth for the first quarter and low-to-mid single digit growth for the full year 2016. While worldwide macroeconomic conditions and currency fluctuations remain a concern, we will drive for growth in every reportable segment and geography in 2016. At January 2016 exchange rates, unfavorable changes in foreign currency translation rates create a full-year headwind of approximately 2 percent on sales and 5 percent on net income for 2016, with the largest headwind in the first half.
The Company’s backlog is typically small compared to annual sales and is not a good indicator of future business levels. In addition to economic growth, the successful launch of new products and expanded distribution coverage, the sales outlook is dependent on many factors, including realization of price increases and stable foreign currency exchange rates.