Asset Allocation

UK’s CEPB favours private markets

The UK’s £2 billion Church of England Pension Board, the pension fund for church clergy has changed strategy, slashing its equity portfolio in favour of private markets in a bid to seek stronger returns, income and a shelter from equity volatility.
Sustainability

ATP’s approach to ESG

The giant Danish fund, ATP, takes a comprehensive approach to ESG including voting and engagement, as well as a large investment in green bonds. Ole Buhl is vice president and head of ESG at ATP explains.
Risk

Geopolitics: risk or opportunity?

The challenge around geopolitical risk is determining how sustained or long-lasting any particular risk is. Angela Rodell, CEO of Alaska Permanent sees opportunity in having a view of the world.
Risk

Australia’s funds can do better

Australia's profit-for-member superannuation funds are leading the industry, but they could do better says Ian Silk, chief executive of AustralianSuper, the country's largest fund.
Investor Profile

Portable alpha slashes pension deficit

The $15 billion International Paper corporate pension fund may be on a de-risking glide path, but vice president of investments Robert Hunkeler proves there is still plenty of room for innovation, including portable alpha. All investments are outsourced.
Fees

Does it pay to pay performance fees?

A new study finds no statistical evidence that returns of pension funds that pay performance fees for active investing are significantly higher or lower than the returns of pension funds that don't.
Sustainability

Investing in the world we want

Global head of investment research at Mercer, Deb Clarke, believes that investment opportunities viewed solely through a return-making lens carry additional risk for long-term investors. She explains why.
Organisational Design

Industry inflection point on diversity

On International Women’s Day we spoke to Mass PRIM CIO, Michael Trotsky about diversity and inclusion. He was part of the CFA Institute’s diversity and inclusion project and believes the industry is at a perfect inflection point to make inroads into improving its score on diversity.
INVESTOR PROFILE
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Investor Profile

AP2’s relationships in China

In the next of this new regular series, we examine the relationships that evolved as Sweden’s AP2 decided to invest with local managers in China. The story examines the process for choosing and monitoring Chinese managers, and the burgeoning focus on sustainability in that market.
Sustainability
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Sustainability

CFA drives diversity agenda

The CFA Institute will work with 30 asset owners and managers as “experimental partners”, implementing diversity and inclusion action plans in their businesses. We spoke to CFA's Rebecca Fender and CalSTRS' Chris Ailman about the importance of diversity. #BalanceforBetter
Sustainability

EU agrees on sustainable disclosure

The European Parliament and EU member states worked through the night on Wednesday to reach an agreement on disclosure requirements related to sustainable investments and sustainability risks. The agreement means that for the first time it is now clear in regulation that ESG is part of investment decision making.
Sustainability

Dutch fund commits to member preferences

For the first time a pension fund board has committed to implementing the results of a member survey, ex ante, resulting in the Pensioenfonds Detailhandel, the pension fund for the retail sector in the Netherlands, increasing its commitment to sustainable investing.
Sustainability

Why slavery needs to be a priority

Chair of the Financial Sector Commission on Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking, PRI’s Fiona Reynolds explains how the financial sector is well positioned to identify, target and disrupt these crimes and their underlying causes.
Asset Classes
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Asset Classes

Infrastructure prices don’t show bubble

A decade of price increases in unlisted infrastructure raised fears of an “infrastructure bubble”. On the contrary, this period was one of price discovery for a nascent asset class, research by EDHECinfra finds.
Asset Classes

Tough times greet new CalPERS CIO

Ben Meng isn’t easing into his role. The new CIO of CalPERS faces three new board members, a stressed private equity program and executive turnover, all under the pressure of a 70 per cent funded status and a maturing membership at the $340 billion fund.
Asset Classes

Why credit ratings need to reflect ESG

ESG relevance scores and ESG-dedicated sections in ratings commentaries are examples of how ratings agencies are addressing demand for analysis of such risk factors in fixed income, the PRI’s Carmen Nuzzo says. Managing data for good comparisons will be a challenge going forward.
Asset Classes

There’s still alpha in public markets

There is still alpha in public equities markets, says Ron Mock, chief executive of the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, who supports the fund’s allocation to hedge funds. Mock’s “faith” in active management extends to quantitative strategies – with the right managers.
FIDUCIARY INVESTORS SYMPOSIUM STANFORD
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FIS Stanford

Rise of the unicorns: venture capital

The increase in privately held start-ups has piqued interest in venture-capital markets. The opportunities are there but investors must realise that technological innovation has changed the game.
FIS Stanford

Protecting human capital helps everyone

Investors have plenty to gain from helping to protect human rights in supply chains and managing the human costs during technological disruption and the transition to a low-carbon economy.
FIS Stanford

How to follow megatrends to success

The big themes that will fuel growth in coming decades are interconnected and subject to change. An expert panel gave advice on riding societal change to outperformance.
FIS Stanford

How the active complements the passive

Investors discuss the various ways that two styles often presented as if they are enemies in fact work hand in hand across portfolios to produce returns.
FIS Stanford

CalPERS shake-up may delay PE plans

The surprise ousting of CalPERS board president Priya Mathur heralds a leadership shake-up that could place final approval of an expanded private equity program on hold.
Asset Allocation
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Asset Allocation

Factors are useless without the research

Product providers cite all manner of factors behind the performance of their products but unless those factors adhere to what academics have replicated and standardised, it’s folly for investors to expect persistent returns from them.
Asset Allocation

2018 CIO sentiment survey

The annual Chief Investment Officer Sentiment Survey, conducted by www.top1000funds.com and Casey Quirk, a practice of Deloitte Consulting, has revealed a global asset owner community that is less tolerant of risk and more interested in negotiating fees.
Asset Allocation

Top five topics for investors in 2019

It’s a VUCA world (volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous). In such times, it’s especially important for investors to have guiding principles. The Thinking Ahead Group provides a handful of key themes to manage in the year ahead.
Asset Allocation

Coal bucks trend with focus on income

The £21 billion Coal Pension Trustees is targeting income and shoring up cash flows. CIO Mark Walker has a new bond portfolio in the works and is examining private debt and property closely. He’s also targeting onshore equities in China.
Strategy
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Strategy

Asset owners’ climate-change advice

A new guide, Climate Change for Asset Owners, provides case studies and other practical advice for how to get investor organisations focused on climate change, how to craft a related investment strategy and how to implement it. The publication includes content from 10 asset owners.
Strategy

Dutch trio launches PE co-investment

The Netherlands’ Achmea Investment Management, Blue Sky Group and SPF Beheer have teamed up on a joint investment platform designed to lower fees and expand opportunities in private equity. Jos van Gisbergen, senior portfolio manager for private equity at Achmea, explains how it works.
Strategy

G20 investor group wants reform

Convincing policymakers to reform laws around infrastructure, carbon emissions and other aspects of long-term, sustainable economic growth may not be easy but a G20 group has started the dialogue.
Strategy

First State: superannuation’s evolution

Most of Australia’s retirement system is still just heading towards investing with scale for both accumulation and pension phase. The A$70 billion First State Super and CIO Damian Graham are already there. So what do its investments look like?