Swedish life and pensions provider Folksam Liv returned 12% on its portfolio for calendar 2014, up from 7.6% the year before.The company said that both equities and fixed income securities contributed to the substantial increases in returns.At end-2014, assets under management had increased to SEK350bn (€38.1bn) from SEK304bn at the end of 2013.However, the solvency ratio had fallen to 155% from 161% the previous year. Folksam said the decline was largely the result of increased technical provisions because of lower interest rates.But premium income rose by 57%, from SEK8.6bn in 2013 to SEK13.4bn in 2014.The company said demand was driven by “consistently strong key figures, broad distribution and strong interest for traditional life insurance with guarantees”.It said volumes within pension investments increased sharply, especially within endowment insurance and individual occupational pensions.The bonus interest on traditional insurances went up to 7% (it is now 8% from 1 February 2015), making it a very attractive investment alternative.Jens Henriksson, president and chief executive at Folksam, said: “Folksam, along with its subsidiaries, showed continued strong economic strength in 2014.“We are growing in virtually all areas at the same time, and we took important steps on our way to becoming a more modern financial institution.”But he added that Folksam has been impacted by both low market rates and comprehensive weather-related claims costs, as well as sweeping regulatory changes.Meanwhile, local government pension scheme KPA, which is 60% owned by Folksam, made returns of 13.3% for 2014, compared with 8.2% for the previous year.This result took five-year average returns between 2009 and 2014 to 8.5%.At end-2014, KPA’s portfolio was invested 55% in fixed income, 39% in equities (16% Swedish, 23% international) and 5% in property, with 1% in alternatives, including hedge funds.The company said it was able to give a substantial allocation to riskier investments such as equities because its solvency was strong (in spite of a slight decline from 172% at end-2013, to 166% a year later).During 2014, premium income rose nearly 3%, to SEK10.2bn from SEK9.9bn.As in the previous year, the company said this was because more people chose KPA Pension as their occupational pension provider, actively or by default, particularly for the KAP-KL collective pension, and also PA-KFS.
AP4 – The Swedish buffer fund has lost its head of global equities to Australia’s AUD118bn (€73.2bn) sovereign fund. Björn Kvarnskog joined AP4 in 2008 and in June took a sabbatical from his role to complete a degree in business administration. He will move to Melbourne in 2016 and become head of equities at the Future Fund. The Future Fund’s CIO Raphael Arndt said Sarah Carne, director of equities, would continue as interim head of equities until Kvarnskog’s arrival.BNP Paribas – Frédéric Janbon is to replace Philippe Marchessaux as chief executive at BNP Paribas Investment Partners. Marchessaux, who oversaw the integration of ABN Amro Asset Management and the investment management business of Fortis into BNP Paribas, is to remain with the company in an as-yet-unannounced role. Meanwhile, BNP Paribas Corporate & Institutional Banking has named Wike Groenenberg as global head of Emerging Market Strategy. She previously worked as head of strategy on the Emerging Markets Macro Fund at BlueBay Asset Management. Before then, Groenenberg worked at Citigroup in London.SPF Beheer – Martin Mos has started as director of finance and risk management at SPF Beheer, the asset manager and pensions provider for the Dutch railways pension fund SPF and the public transport scheme SPOV. Mos was chief executive at A&O Services, the pensions provider for the Dutch finishing and maintenance sector. Mos succeeds Saskia Slijboom, appointed chief financial and risk officer at insurer ASR.Comgest – Vincent Strauss is to retire from his executive and portfolio management roles to join the Supervisory Committee of Comgest Global Investors in 2016. Strauss will hand over the role of chief executive to Arnaud Cosserat, effective 1 March 2016. Cosserat joined Comgest in 1996 as a European equity portfolio manager and has more than 27 years’ industry experience. He was appointed CIO in January.Institutional Money Market Funds Association – Jane Lowe has been appointed secretary general, replacing Susan Hindle-Barone. For 11 years up until 2013, she served as a senior director at the UK Investment Association (formerly known as the Investment Management Association) in a variety of roles. Keva, PensionDanmark, Norwegian Association of Pension Funds, AP4, Future Fund, BNP Paribas, BlueBay, SPF Beheer, A&O Services, ASR, Comgest, Institutional Money Market Funds Association, Investment AssociationKeva – Tapani Hellstén, deputy chief executive at the Finnish pension fund, is to take over the duties of chief executive until further notice. This follows the sudden resignation of chief executive Jukka Männistö, which the board accepted on 8 October. Keva’s board is set to discuss the schedule for appointing a new permanent chief executive at its next meeting on 29 October. Keva said Männistö’s resignation was due to a “crisis of confidence” between him and the management board.PensionDanmark – Søren Ulslev has decided to leave PensionDanmark, where he has been director of real estate, to look for new challenges, the pension fund said. He is finishing work at the labour-market pension fund at the end of October. He will be replaced temporarily by deputy director Karsten Withington Brink, who will lead the property team until a successor to Ulslev takes over.Norwegian Association of Pension Funds (Pensjonskasseforeningen) – Espen Kløw has been appointed secretary general and will take up his new role in January 2016. He will replace the current secretary general Rolf Skomsvold.
Investors should challenge extractive companies on the level of scientific knowledge on boards and ensure they evaluate the impact of adverse weather on their business, according to a guide by the Institutional Investor Group on Climate Change (IIGCC).The guide – ‘Investor Expectations of Mining Companies’ – is meant to develop market best practice, according to lead author Bruce Duguid, associate director at Hermes EOS.It also aims to ensure company boards make decisions in the long-term interest of shareholders.Stephanie Pfeifer, chief executive of the IIGCC, added that the investor community was setting out “as clearly as possible” its expectations of mining companies in the lead up to the UN climate change conference in Paris. “The guide has been developed to help investors step up their engagement with the mining sector as part of their ongoing efforts to better manage climate risk across their portfolios,” she said.The guide sets out a number of investor expectations in the area of company governance, the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, and how effectively the risk stemming from climate change is incorporated into business plans, but also a company’s level of lobbying, as a means of stress testing business strategy.It suggests companies be asked about their views of carbon price, and how their views are aligned by any shadow carbon price already employed for their internal models.It also says companies should be challenged on their views of crucial carbon abatement policies, such as the US clean power plan and the Australian direct action policy, enacted after the current government abolished the fixed price on carbon.In line with recent calls for oil companies to sever ties with trade associations that lobby in ways at odds with a company’s public pronouncements on climate change, it urges investors to demand disclosure of the governance procedures in place to monitor views of industry groups funded by companies.Directly addressing board compositions, investors are urged to ask whether any board members have an understanding of the economics of climate change, “including an understanding of the policies and technologies likely to prove disruptive to long-term demand for key commodity groups”.Emma Herd, chief executive of the Australian and New Zealand Investor Group on Climate Change, said the guide would allow the market to react to climate change “by driving thorough scenario testing, risk analysis and transparency” among mining companies. Read more about the upcoming climate conference in Paris in the current issue of IPE
Ircantec, the €9.2bn French public sector pension scheme, is to launch a dedicated green bond fund as part of its plan to help finance the transition to a low-carbon economy.Ircantec plans to launch the fund at the end of 2016, after a call for tenders this autumn.The fund will have a mandate to invest in green bonds from issuers in OECD countries and will be structured as a Fonds commun de placement (FCP), an unincorporated open-ended fund.Ircantec already invests in Green bonds, but, until now, these investments had been made as part of its general bond portfolio. However, based on its own experience and the evolution of the market for green bonds, the pension provider has decided to treat green bonds as a separate asset class, to be managed in the framework of a standalone fund.This, according to the scheme, will allow it to better monitor and steer its green bond activity.It said this would, in turn, enable it to achieve its return objectives, as well as the ambitions it has to contribute to what in France is known as “la transition énergétique et écologique” (TEE) – the shift to a more environmentally sustainable social and economic system, in particular with a view to mitigating climate change.Ircantec has made some €300m of green bond investments since 2013, representing 7% of its overall bond holdings, according to a statement.The scheme noted that this compares with a market average of less than 1%.Jean-Pierre Costes, president of the board of directors at Ircantec, said the scheme had decided on a step-change with respect to green bonds and that this was part of Ircantec’s putting into practice its recently launched energy transition roadmap.Virginie Chapron-du Jeu, investment director at Caisse des Dépôts, the fiduciary manager for Ircantec, said it had progressively increased the share of green bonds in the bond portfolio, allowing the scheme to familiarise itself with the emerging asset class.“The market for green bonds has now reached a level of maturity and size to justify a distinct investment strategy and their being defined as an individual asset class,” she said.Ircantec’s move is similar to that of AP2, Sweden’s second buffer fund, which earlier this year announced it would establish a standalone Green bond portfolio.AP3 in January said it planned to treble its green bond holdings over the next three years.According to the Climate Bonds Initiative, the global market for “climate-aligned” bonds, which includes labelled green bonds and others that do not carry such a label, stands at $694bn (€828bn).This comprises 3,590 bonds from 780 issuers around the world across a range of “climate themes”, according to the not-for-profit organisation’s recently launched ‘State of the Market’ report. Some $120bn of the bonds are labelled green bonds.This compares with a total global bond market of $90trn, according to the report.
Susan Buckley, QIC’s managing director for global liquid strategies, said: “Just as China’s $6trn equity market became too big for the world’s investors to ignore, so too is the country’s $12trn bond market.“China is the world’s second-largest debt market behind the US.” Buckley said QIC saw “excellent” prospects for growth, encouraged by the willingness of China’s national government to increase fiscal spending to offset any slowdown in private and local government investment.In addition, she said, Chinese local governments raised money from bond issuance.QIC said authorities had already opened up their bond markets to foreign investors through the Bond Connect initiative, launched last July.Other reforms had made it easier for foreign investors to repatriate capital unimpeded, the manager added.On a year-to-date basis, foreign investments in Chinese government bonds reached $48bn in June, far exceeding the annual inflow of $27bn in 2017.China’s onshore bond market was previously infamously difficult to access. Foreign investors currently own less than 3% of the market, versus an average of 43% across many developed country markets.Buckley said: “We estimate that the risk-adjusted returns of the Bloomberg Global Aggregate index would have improved by nearly 15 basis points per annum in the last five years if onshore China bonds had been included.”QIC has been analysing the Bond Connect trading and settlement infrastructure for several months, and is currently working through the process of Bond Connect registration. Global index providers are expected to open up to the $12trn (€10.4trn) domestic bond market in the next two years, according to QIC Investment Management. The Australian fund manager – set up in 1991 by the government of the state of Queensland – said it expected others to reflect the addition of yuan-denominated government and central bank securities to the Bloomberg Global Aggregate index from next year.In an investment commentary, prepared in collaboration with China’s Ping An Asset Management, QIC said global investors would be closely monitoring whether FTSE Russell added Chinese bonds to its World Government Bond Index (WGBI), and whether JP Morgan would follow for its Government Bond Index – Emerging Markets (GBI-EM).The company said these providers were “likely to follow suit in 2019 or 2020”
The first pooled investments by members of a £40bn (€44bn) group of UK local authority pension funds are set to be made from October.Following regulatory approval, the ACCESS asset pool will launch a global equity sub-fund in October, it was announced today.Three of the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) pension funds behind the ACCESS pool are to invest £1.6bn in the sub-fund.Information about who would manage the fund was not provided by the time of publication. Achieving cost savings is one of the drivers of the government’s pooling policy for the LGPS funds. According to ACCESS and Link Fund Solutions, the operator of the pool, the investment in the sub-fund would result in anticipated savings of £1.5m a year, with savings eventually expected to rise to £1.9m a year.More sub-funds are expected to be launched early next year.ACCESS described the receipt of regulatory approval for its first pooled fund as “a major milestone in the project to provide the ACCESS pool with a range of pooled investment funds, enabling authorities to execute their local investment strategy whilst benefiting from economies of being one of the largest investment pools in the UK”.The ACCESS pool, which is made up of 11 LGPS funds, appointed Link to run its pooled assets in March. Last year it awarded an £11bn passive management mandate to UBS Asset Management, which is expected to generate annual savings of £5m.Councillor Andrew Reid, chairman of the ACCESS Joint Committee, said: “This has been a significant first year with the appointment of the passive manager, the appointment of Link as the operator and now the launch of… the first sub-fund.”Yesterday the ACCESS pool announced that Essex County Council had been selected as the host for the ACCESS Support Unit (ASU), which would shortly be advertising for the position of programme director and contract manager.The ASU would be led by the programme director and consist of a small number of permanent staff, it said.ACCESS is made up of the LGPS pension funds for Cambridgeshire, East Sussex, Essex, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Isle of Wight, Kent, Norfolk, Northamptonshire, Suffolk and West Sussex.
UK charities are facing pension deficits proportionately higher than listed company schemes, according to a report from consultancy firm Hymans Robertson report.The report, titled ‘DB pension funding in the charitable sector’, found that across 40 of the largest charities in England and Wales, the average pension deficit equalled 18% of their unrestricted reserves – funds freely available to spend on a charity’s purposes, and which therefore indicate a charity’s ability to support its defined benefit (DB) obligations.In contrast, the DB scheme deficit for the average FTSE 350 company was only 1% of its market capitalisation, the consultancy said.Alistair Russell-Smith, head of corporate DB consulting at Hymans Robertson, said: “Charities are facing the double whammy of fundraising pressures hitting income, at the same time as The Pensions Regulator [TPR] wants them to put more cash into their pension schemes.” Action for Children£614.4m£614.6m(£0.1m)100% RSPB£194m£267.6m(£73.6m)72% Royal National Institute for the Blind£263.7m£266.4m(£2.7m)99% National Trust£628.9m£754.1m(£125.2m)83% RSPCA£260.3m£306.6m(£46.3m)85% Cancer Research UK£725.3m £651.8m £73.5m111% NSPCC£168.4m£186.4m(£18m)90% Barnardos£684.6m£823.5m(£138.9m)83% Age UK£125.2m£143.3m(£18.1m)87% Mencap£131.2m£140.1m(£8.9m)94% General Medical Council£233.3m£219.4m£13.9m106% Royal National Lifeboat Institution£329.9m£380.4m(£50.5m)87% Guide Dogs for the Blind£302.8m£298.6m£4.2m101% Canal & River Trust£551.8m£539.7m£12.1m102% In its report, the consultancy warned that TPR was expected to introduce stricter funding requirements for DB schemes, which many charities could feel was “onerous”. The company also expressed concern that such a regime could force some schemes to take more investment risk.However, Russell-Smith said charities should seek to make use of their advantages over companies.“Charities tend to have far less covenant leakage than corporates – they don’t pay dividends, often have no debt, and there tends to be a strong focus on preserving reserves,” he said. “So pension scheme trustees may have more confidence in the long-term covenant support than with a corporate.”He added that some charities had unencumbered assets such as property on their balance sheet, which could be used to provide additional covenant support to the pension scheme.“The long-term covenant, bolstered where possible with security over charity assets, could support a longer recovery period for the pension scheme,” he said. “All this helps set a sustainable funding and investment strategy for the pension scheme with appropriate contingency plans in place.“As The Pensions Regulator becomes tougher and intervenes more in pension funding in the sector, I expect this to become an increasingly important feature in a charity’s toolkit.”Russell-Smith also highlighted consolidation as an option for charity DB schemes. One option was “sectionalised DB master trusts”, which he said could reduce scheme running costs by as much as 50% while removing the ‘last man standing’ risk inherent in some multi-employer schemes.TPT Retirement Solutions is one such offering, and already runs a number of charities’ DB funds.Russell-Smith added: “Commercial consolidators can provide a clean break to employers from their DB pension scheme at a lower cost than buy-out, and especially for charities in multi-employer schemes to exit cost-effectively, while improving benefit security for their members.”Pension funding levels of UK charitiesFor some UK charities, maintaining DB schemes has proven a near-impossible challenge, writes Nick Reeve.In March this year, a small development charity in Northern Ireland shut down, citing the unaffordable cost of its DB scheme, and IPE research has shown that larger charities also face large shortfalls.More than half of 44 charity DB pension funds analysed by IPE were in deficit according to their latest annual reports. Of the sample, 29 funds recorded a shortfall, and in some cases the nominal deficit was a significant proportion of the charity’s annual income.Hymans Robertson’s report showed that the average charity DB fund deficit was equal to 24% of annual unrestricted income, but this figure was much higher for some individual charity schemes.Animal charity the PDSA’s £49.7m pension fund deficit, recorded at the end of December 2017, was more than 48% of its total 2017 income, while Blind Veterans UK reported a DB pension deficit of £17.6m at the end of March last year, 59% of its annual income.Pension funding levels of UK charitiesCharityAssets Liabilities Deficit/(Surplus) Funding level PDSA£119m£168.6m(£49.7m)71% Children’s Society£143.2m£146.4m(£3.2m)98% Save The Children UK£161.3m£176m(£14.7m)92% Salvation Army£313.1m£341.3m(£28.2m)92% Oxfam£193.3m£196.6m(£3.3m)98% Scope£111m£96.9m£14m114%
Allianz Global Investors – The €535bn investment house has named Beatrix Anton-Groenemeyer (left) as its first chief sustainability officer. She is currently global head of product specialists for the company’s fixed income teams.In a statement announcing Anton-Groenemeyer’s new position, the company said it was in the process of embedding environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) factors across all its strategies “with integrated ESG already applicable to €118bn” of its assets under management. It also runs €22bn in socially responsible investment strategies and €6bn in impact investing strategies.CEO Andreas Utermann said: “Our ability to improve investment outcomes for our clients by taking a holistic approach to sustainability is a core tenet of our value proposition.” PGB – Nico Meeuwisse, chairman of Dutch multi-sector pension scheme PGB’s supervisory board, resigned at the start of this year, according to the scheme’s annual report. His departure followed a dispute with the pension fund’s board about a reassessment of strategy and governance.A spokesperson for PGB attributed the issue to a lack of clarity about the demarcation of responsibilities between the scheme’s board and its governing bodies, adding that new arrangements had been made since. Currently, PGB’s supervisory board comprises Alfred Slager and Orpa Bisschop.RMC – Former Mercer CIO Herwig Kinzler has resurfaced at German consultancy RMC. He has been in charge of the Cologne office since 1 May, having left Mercer in January. RMC Risk-Management-Consulting has been advising institutional investors for almost 25 years. Its board consists of Patrik Bremerich, Hans-Jürgen Reinhart and Bernd Rose.Kempen – The €59bn Dutch asset manager has hired Eszter Vitorino Fuleky as senior responsible investment manager, specifically tasked with corporate governance.Since 2010, she worked at the Global Reporting Initiative, which develops guidelines for ESG reporting. She leaves as head of capital markets engagement.Fuleky was also a member of the expert group advising the European Commission on developing a European definition of sustainable investment.MN – MN, the €130bn asset manager and pensions provider for the Dutch metal and engineering sector schemes PMT and PME, has named Hanny Kemna as the new chair of its supervisory board. She succeeds Ella Vogelaar – a former minister for housing and planning – who stepped down recently after four years at the helm.Kemna, whose responsibilities include ICT, has been on the board since 2016. She has also been tasked with remuneration and appointments. Until 2014, Kemna was an IT auditor and partner at Ernst & Young.Separately, Fleur Rieter has been appointed chief financial, risk and compliance officer at MN as of 1 July. She joins from insurer ASR, where she was director of pensions since 2013. Prior to this, she held senior positions at insurers De Amerfoortse and Legal & General Netherlands.At MN, Rieter succeeds Liesbeth Sinke, who left on 1 February. ASR said that Pauline Derkman, its director of individual life insurance, would take over Rieter’s position and combine this with her current job.LifeSight – Willis Towers Watson’s defined contribution master trust has appointed Richard Everitt as head of implementations, responsible for overseeing the processes for bringing in new clients.Everitt was previously a vice president at Goldman Sachs, including 11 years as EMEA pensions manager. He has also held administration and consultancy rolls for Spicer & Oppenheimer, Headington, Aon and Gissings.LifeSight managing director Fiona Matthews said: “We’re expecting several large schemes with assets in excess of £1bn to come to market over the next 12 months, as more organisations review their pension provision. Richard’s extensive experience in the master trust industry will be invaluable as we continue to offer members the highest quality outcomes and communication.”NN/ING – The two Dutch collective defined contribution (CDC) pension funds of NN Investment Partners and ING Group have appointed Ingmar Minderhoud on their respective boards, tasked with overseeing finance and risk matters.Until the end of last year, he was a member of the accountability body of the NN CDC Pensioenfonds. Since 2005, Minderhoud held a position at Integrated Client Solutions – which offers fiduciary services for pension funds and insurers – at NN IP. Prior to this, he worked as a scenario specialist at Ortec for four years. Transparency Task Force (TTF) – The UK financial services lobby group has appointed former pensions minister Baroness Ros Altmann (right) as its 100th ambassador as it seeks to expand its work on improving cost disclosure and other industry practices. Baroness Altmann – now a member of the House of Lords, the UK’s upper chamber of parliament – is one of the country’s leading commentators on pension issues.She said: “I have spent many years trying to improve the way the pension system works and to make pensions work better for people. There have been significant steps forward over the years such as the creation of the Pension Protection Fund and, of course, pensions auto-enrolment, which has been a major success so far. “It’s now mission-critical that the pensions industry works harder to improve engagement and contributions, while building trust and confidence with products and services that offer good value for customers.”Kames Capital – The Edinburgh-headquartered investment management group has appointed Thomas Hanson as head of the high yield fixed income team. He joins from Janus Henderson where he was a high yield credit portfolio manager, and has also worked for Aerion Fund Management and Lazard Asset Management.In addition, Kames has also recruited Eleanor Price as high yield analyst. She was previously a high yield fund manager at Baillie Gifford, and has also worked at Insight and Barings.The appointments follow the departure of high yield manager Jack Holmes from Kames, who has left to “pursue other opportunities”, the company said.BNY Mellon – The $1.8trn (€1.6trn) asset manager BNY Mellon Investment Management has named Koen Hoogenhout as senior business development manager for the Netherlands.Hoogenhout joins from Vanguard Asset Management where he worked for eight years in a similar position, focusing on the Dutch, Belgian, Luxembourg, Swedish and UK markets. He has also worked at PwC, ABN Amro and AXA IM.Aon – Alison Cosadinos has joined the consultancy giant’s international retirement team as an associate partner. She joins after a short career break, having previously worked for the Royal Bank of Canada for 11 years, latterly as director of international pensions and benefits.At Aon, Cosadinos will advise multi-national companies on “a range of international retirement and benefit matters”, the company said, including issues around Brexit and financial wellbeing.Amundi – Richard Deutsch has joined Amundi’s London office as head of credit research. He was previously global head of credit research at HSBC Global Asset Management, and has ran the credit research and trading desk analytical units at BNP Paribas CIB, and fixed income research for Merrill Lynch.Haven Green – Wendy Mayall, former CIO at Unilever and Liverpool Victoria (now LV=), has been appointed chair of the board of Haven Green, a specialist alternatives asset management adviser and placement agent.Mayall, a co-founder of investment consultancy Stamford Associates, also holds non-executive positions at insurance groups Fidelity Life and Phoenix, as well as pension provider TPT Retirement Solutions.Haven Green was set up last year by David Hunter, an actuary and former consultant at First Avenue Partners, a UK-based placement agent. It aims to help institutional investors source infrastructure, real estate, private equity and private credit investments.State Street Corporation – Mark Westwell has been appointed to lead State Street’s UK trustee and depositary business, which looks after more than £254bn of pooled fund assets. He has worked for State Street since 2007 in a number of leadership roles and relationship management positions. He also chairs the group’s Brexit client communications group for Europe. Frédéric Janbon, CEO of BNP Paribas Asset Management, said Gambi would be “instrumental in enhancing our investment platform, including overseeing the integration of our global sustainability strategy”.Jupiter – The UK listed fund manager has appointed Phil Wagstaff as global head of distribution, replacing Nick Ring. Wagstaff joins from Janus Henderson where he was also global head of distribution and worked with Jupiter’s new CEO, Andrew Formica.Prior to joining Janus Henderson, Wagstaff held senior distribution roles at Gartmore, New Star and M&G. He will join Jupiter on 5 June.Ring has left the company to “pursue other executive opportunities”, Jupiter said in a statement.Separately, Jupiter has also appointed Wayne Mepham as chief financial officer. Subject to regulatory approval, he will join the £44.1bn (€50.5bn) asset manager on 2 September from Schroders, where he is global head of finance.Mepham has worked at Schroders for nine years, and previously held a number of senior positions at PwC. He replaces Charlotte Jones, who resigned from Jupiter earlier this year to take up the CFO role at RSA Insurance Group – although she will stay in her current role until the end of July. BNP Paribas Asset Management – The French investment house has hired Rob Gambi (pictured) as global head of investments. He joins the group’s London office and is responsible for management and performance of the €421bn group’s entire investment operation.Gambi previously worked at Henderson Global Investors – now Janus Henderson Investors – as chief investment officer. Prior to this he was global head of fixed income at UBS Global Asset Management. BNP Paribas AM, Jupiter, Janus Henderson, AllianzGI, PGB, RMC, Kempen, Mercer, MN, LifeSight, NN Investment Partners, ING, Transparency Task Force, Kames Capital, BNY Mellon, Amundi, Haven Green, State Street
Bergan described the lawsuit KLP had joined – which is seeking DKK1.5bn (€201m) in damages – as a very standard class action.“We participate in class actions quite often; whenever there is money on the table we claim our right in the settlement, and monitoring the cases that are out there is a service we get from an external provider,” she said, adding that in certain jurisdictions, including Europe, it was necessary to be part of the action from the beginning in order to be part of the settlement.While KLP would opt out of any collective actions it thought were unreasonable, she said this particular case was not considered as such.Sigetty told IPE the plaintiffs in his action were mostly pension funds, asset management trusts and similar entities.“The investors suffered losses because Danske Bank did not comply with the money laundry legislation and its obligations to inform the market of important matters,” he said.“When this was reported by the press, the shares dropped more than 50% over time as matters were revealed,” said Sigetty. Norway’s Kommunal landspensjonskasse (KLP) has confirmed it has joined one of the many investor lawsuits now underway to seek compensation from Denmark’s biggest bank after a huge money-laundering scandal halved the value of its shares in two years.KLP is one of 63 plaintiffs in a writ submitted on 27 December 2019 in the Copenhagen district court by lawyer Ole Sigetty, partner at the firm Németh Sigetty.Jeanett Bergan, KLP’s head of responsible investment, told IPE: “In the last two years, our holdings of Danske Bank equities have lost half of their value as a result of the money-laundering case.”The NOK745bn (€75bn) pension fund’s stake in the Danish bank is now worth NOK120m, she said, providing a figure which implies the fund lost around €12m. Danske Bank headquarters in CopenhagenThis collective lawsuit is only one of the class actions being brought against Danske Bank for investment losses suffered as a result of the affair that pension funds have joined.Danish law firm Njord is working on a case and partner Thomas Ryhl told IPE it expects to file well before the end of this year.“We expect to file the joint claims of a double-digit number of large institutional investors, each representing a number of savings and pensions funds,” he said.A year ago, the firm said it assessed that Danske Bank had failed to comply with its obligations to disclose information to the market about the gravity and scale of the money laundering issues in a timely manner — which resulted in inflated prices for the bank’s share.Ryhl said he would argue that since then, the actions of public authorities and other claimants, as well as the stories covered by the media, had only served to further strengthen the case against Danske Bank.In October 2019, US law firm Grant & Eisenhofer said a second wave of lawsuits in a case it was bringing had been filed in Copenhagen’s city court by an international coalition of institutional investors in the ongoing financial fraud case against Danske Bank.Olav Haazen, a firm director who represents the investor group, told IPE the group included five pension funds from three Scandinavian countries.“Class actions are an important part of the legal system to provide a justice tool for smaller individuals”Jeanett Bergan, head of responsible investment at KLP“Since the second wave of filings, we have over 200 institutional investor claims and our damages claims are approximately $800m,” adding that with a third wave of claims his firm would file in February, this figure would probably reach €1bn.In a general comment on the class actions, Danske Bank said in a statement it was defending itself against these claims.“The timing and completion of any such lawsuit is uncertain, and we consider any development together with our external counsel. At this stage, we have no further comments,” the bank said.Bergan said that despite the legal case, KLP was on good, cooperative terms with Danske Bank.“We have a very good dialogue with Danske Bank, and they are now making sure they have the AML (anti-money laundering) system in place to lower future risks,” said Bergan.“A lot of people would criticise investors for being part of these cases, because it is the shareholders who carry the cost of them. But at the same time, if we didn’t take part, we would lose out because we would not benefit from the recovery,” she said.Bergan said it was also important to be involved for the sake of broader corporate responsibility, and the necessity of having it tested in law.“Class actions are an important part of the legal system to provide a justice tool for smaller individuals,” she added.
Bright lights down the streets. But it seems things may be looking up for the World Number 150 who banked a reported $1m for his stint early this year on television reality show “I’m a celebrity … Get me out of here”. File picture from when the Tomics lived at the twin villas. Luxury lodge Queensland’s hottest home this week Big-money market braced for bumper sales Win for buyers as units set to boom Bernard Tomic’s family home in Southport has finally found some love on the market. Picture: Nigel HallettFIERY Aussie tennis star Bernard Tomic may have taken a pounding in the tennis world but at least one thing’s gone right — finally finding love for his old stomping ground.The family’s old home on the Gold Coast sold for an undisclosed sum two days ago.Tomic who failed to qualify for Wimbledon this year has had a tough time adjusting to life in the lower ranks of the international tennis world. With their famous son climbing the ranks at the tennis open organised by World Number 1 Rafa Nadal in Majorca this week, the Tomic family can finally let go of their twin villas in Southport.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus17 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market17 hours ago It’s located close to the waterfront. The family first tried to sell this property in 2012. The villas come with a very private party space. The agents at Harcourts Coastal could not be reached for comment. They had it listed on realestate.com.au as one the owners were “sad” to lose.But the listing said the vendors were “committed elsewhere”.“They must sell and all offers in writing will be presented.” They have been trying to sell the seven bedroom, five bathroom, four car space property on and off since June 2012 when it was priced at $750,000 each. The price dropped to offers over $695,000 as recently as March this year before it was finally put through a 36 day campaign leading to this week’s auction. The Tomics were willing to sell the villas together or separately and marketed the property as having no body corporate fees and nothing to spend on upgrades. FOLLOW SOPHIE FOSTER ON FACEBOOK Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayNext playlist itemMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 9:24Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -9:24 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedQuality Levels720p720pHD288p288pAutoA, selectedAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.This is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreenCoreLogic Brisbane Housing Market Update – August 201809:25