Promoting transparency for better pension outcomes
Anne Simpson, managing investment director, board governance and sustainability tells Amanda White why transparency is so important at CalPERS and what the fund is doing to improve it.
Comprehensive, holistic value disclosures and compelling communication are key benchmarks for pension funds. This has been confirmed by the first year experience working with leading global pension funds for the Global Pension Transparency Benchmark, a collaboration between Top1000funds.com and CEM Benchmarking. In year two, in recognition of this belief and communication excellence, we have decided to award bonus points to funds preparing
The Global Pension Transparency Benchmark (GPTB) measured four factors in its assessment of transparency of pension fund disclosures, here Amanda White looks specifically at the level of cost transparency across pension funds globally.
Global Pension Transparency Benchmark advisory board member Lorelei Graye, says the benchmark combined with better data standards for incoming reporting will usher in more constructive transparency.
The Global Pension Transparency Benchmark revealed the need for much improved transparency among pension fund public disclosures across the globe. But there were some notable best practice examples among pension funds globally. So who were they?
Effective benchmarking separates the wheat from the chaff in pension management, according to Keith Ambachtsheer who argues the Top1000funds.com /CEM Benchmarking Global Pension Transparency Benchmark will help reduce the material ‘saying-doing’ gap in the global pension industry.
The Global Pension Transparency Benchmark has revealed the need for serious improvement in pension transparency across the globe.
Transparency is an important link in improving pension delivery, and the Global Pension Transparency Benchmark will help lift transparency standards and ultimately trust in pension institutions, according to its advisory board.
A new Global Pension Transparency Benchmark – the first formal collaboration between Top1000funds.com and CEM Benchmarking – will launch in February 2021 ranking countries, via their underlying pension funds, on four factors: governance and organization; performance; costs; and responsible investing.
Asset owners are reporting only half of their true total costs according to analysis by CEM Benchmarking exclusively for Top1000funds.com. This means tens of billions of dollars across the industry is not being reported. The authors look at case studies and make suggestions for industry best practice.
The Canadian model, revered world over for its supreme pension management, is not low cost despite that being one of its oft-described traits. New research by CEM Benchmarking and McGill University shows that these funds are cost efficient, rather than being low cost. Their aim is to be high net performers, not low cost.
Looking back at the portfolios of large institutional investors during and after the dot.com crash and the GFC, CEM Benchmarking, reveals commonality in the portfolios that thrived. For both events the top quartile returns were more than 2 per cent higher than the bottom quartile. Analysing the asset allocation and behaviour of investors showed two clear themes: top quartile performers had more defensive allocations pre-crash; and rebalancing is a tailwind for performance.
Analysis of institutional investor private equity allocations shows the differences in implementation styles and related costs are a key driver of a wide dispersion in private equity results. Researchers at CEM Benchmarking show that costs matter, a lot, in PE.
Active investing in US large caps has detracted value from US pension fund portfolios and exposures should be indexed, according to new research by CEM Benchmarking. This could result in huge cost savings and have implications for how pension funds spend their active budget.
Many hedge fund portfolios perform well before costs but fall into negative alpha after charges are levied, Canadian firm CEM Benchmarking’s analysis of nearly 400 large investors has found.
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CEM Benchmarking is an independent provider of cost and performance benchmarking information for pension funds and other institutional asset owners worldwide. It believes ‘what gets measured gets managed’ and is deeply committed to helping clients run cost-effective operations that generate value for their stakeholders. With vast industry knowledge and a robust database spanning 28 years and $10+ trillion in AUM, CEM helps more than half of the world’s top 300 pension schemes understand and manage their costs and performance. CEM also facilitates better pension outcomes by sharing cutting edge research derived from its proprietary databases.
Top1000funds.com is the market leading news and analysis site for the world’s largest institutional investors. It focuses on leading the global investment industry to continuous improvement through case studies of best practice in governance and decision making, portfolio construction and efficient portfolio management, fees and costs, and sustainable investing. The publication pushes the industry to question whether status quo processes and behaviours to tackle risks and opportunities will be sufficient in the future, and actively campaigns for diversity, sustainability, transparency, innovation and better alignment of fees in the investment industry. Top1000funds.com is read by investment professionals in more than 40 countries.