BACB pension scheme transacts first open-tendered underwritten buy-in

first_imgThe British Arab Commercial Bank (BACB) Pension Scheme has entered into a £12m (€14.5m) insurance contract with Partnership, in the UK’s first tendered medically underwritten buy-in.The £12m deal covered all non-insured pensioners in the £60m scheme and was arranged via a third-party information collector.MorganAsh collected the medical information from the scheme’s members via a questionnaire. It then passed on the results to all interested insurers to formulate their bids.Insurers responded to the tender based on the identical medical information, resulting in a more competitive price for the trustees to transact. This differed from the process seen thus far, where deals are completed after a pension scheme selects an insurer upfront.JLT Employee Benefits (EB) had worked with insurers and MorganAsh to develop the process for its clients.Graham Wardle of BESTrustees, who chairs the BACB scheme, said the board received a 95% response rate from members, allowing the trustees to obtain an accurate price for the exercise.“We were able to achieve a competitive price by selecting Partnership Assurance, and we are pleased with how streamlined the process was,” he said.“The continual de-risking of our pension scheme is an important goal and ensures the long-term security for our members.”Buyout consultant at JLT EB, David Barratt, said the new process designed by the consultant could be important for schemes looking for effective and efficient de-risking.“We are continually looking to improve efficiencies for our clients and are delighted to have brought this new process to the market,” he said.Partnership Assurance director of corporate partnerships, Will Hale, said the tendered deal represented a landmark in the underwritten bulk annuity market.“We were happy to support JLT Employee Benefits develop this new market process,” he said.“A common approach to the collection of member information will ensure schemes wishing to de-risk through a choice of insurers, and they can be confident of attaining a competitive price.”last_img read more

Mandate roundup: Dorset County, Wiltshire Pension Fund, Loomis Sayles

first_imgAsset managers should have a minimum three-year track record with £1bn in the strategy or pooled fund. Segregated mandates will be considered.The smart-beta strategy, Dorset said, should be factor based or a fundamental strategy, also with no exposure to emerging markets.Likewise, asset managers should have £1bn in the strategy or fund, with a three-year track record.The fund has a target 22% allocation to global equities in developed markets, its second-highest allocation after the UK equity market.Dorset forms part of the Hermes Infrastructure investment fund, which recently took stakes in Continental rail operator Eurostar and UK ports operator Associated British Ports.In other news, the Wiltshire Pension Fund has appointed Loomis Sayles to manage its £200m diversified fixed income portfolio.The £2bn LGPS fund has made equal commitments to two of Loomis Sayles’ offerings – an absolute return fixed income fund that invests across global markets, and a global multi-credit strategy.The pension fund said it was keen to diversify away from its equity weights and hedge potential interest rate rises and low returns in the UK bond market. The £2.2bn (€3bn) Dorset County Pension Fund had tendered for the management of nearly £500m of its global equity assets.The UK local government pension scheme (LGPS) has two portfolios available for management – a £240m active global equity fund and a smart-beta global equity fund of the same size.The fund said it would prefer one or two managers to handle the investments on its behalf.For its global active equity portfolio, the fund said it was seeking a long-only strategy, with managers operating a fundamental discretionary approach, with no exposure to emerging markets.last_img read more

ABP seeks to force governments to keep infrastructure promises

first_imgShe said ABP also had a negative experience with its investments in solar power generation in Spain, with the government abolishing subsidies prematurely.An investment charter with countries in which large-term investments are made should prevent governments from changing the rules for specified areas, in order to safeguard returns, she said.Wortmann-Kool also argued that a government should pay compensation for violating the charter.In her opinion, national governments would benefit from such agreements, as this would make investing more attractive.ABP’s chair declined to say whether the absence of an agreement would make or break an investment decision, but she stressed that the scheme would not invest if there were too much uncertainty.She said ABP had already started talks with the European Commission on the issue, as the EC’s €300bn investment plan had “triggered similar worries”.Wortmann-Kool took pains to underline that the pension fund also wanted to rely on existing governments’ promises for projects related to the so-called Juncker Plan.In the Netherlands, ABP is seeking to discuss the issue with the Ministry of Economic Affairs. ABP, the €356bn pension fund for Dutch civil servants, is seeking to negotiate “investment charters” with national governments to force them to keep their long-term promises.ABP chair Corien Wortmann-Kool, speaking at the World Pension Summit in The Hague, said these agreements would prevent governments from undermining pension funds’ long-term investments with sudden changes in legislation.She said pension funds were keen to increase their investments in infrastructure, climate and energy but wary of governments changing legislation and subsidy arrangements.As an example, Wortmann-Kool cited an ABP investment in toll roads in France, where the government introduced limits for raising toll tariffs, which jeopardised the expected returns.last_img read more

Real estate standout performer as Church of England returns 8.2%

first_imgWhile the fund has achieved an average 9.7% per annum growth over the past 30 years, Andreas Whittam Smith, first Church estates commissioner, warned that achieving such a satisfactory performance in future might be harder.He said investors were nervous because they felt governments had lost the power to reverse any slowdown in economic activity.In the past, governments would reduce interest rates, but now that rates hover around zero, that remedy is unavailable.“It’s hard to believe negative interest rates can provide the necessary boost, or governments would let the supply of money expand,” he added.“But doing that on a grand scale recently through so-called ‘quantitative easing’ has had more impact on the prices of assets, especially real estate, than it has had on business activity.“The risk is that economic activity slows down across the world and remains stuck at a low level.”The endowment fund helps finance the Church’s activities, as well as pensions arising from pre-1998 service.Over 2015, property – 28% of total assets – was a star performer, delivering a 14.4% return across all portfolios, although less spectacular than the 27% achieved the year before.The Commissioners attributed this return to active management of a high-quality set of properties.The best performing property class was strategic land, which returned 19.8%.The asset class, which makes up 3% of total assets, provides development opportunities and activity centred on housing developments in smaller towns and cities such as Carlisle, Peterborough and Chichester.  The largest allocation is to rural property, which makes up 9% of total assets and includes farmland, renewable energy and minerals rights.This allocation returned 9% over 2015.Residential property (6% of overall assets) returned 19.5% and commercial (4% of assets) 13.5%.Indirect property – minority investments in property partnerships – amounts to 3% of assets and returned 12.8%.The Commissioners focused on key sales, particularly of its global real estate investment trust (REIT exposure), and most of its student housing in the last three months of 2015.Timberland now makes up 4% of total assets, delivering 13% for 2015.The estate is invested in the UK, the US and Australia, and activity included further acquisitions of Indian sandalwood holdings in Australia.Meanwhile, global equities, which make up 23% of assets, returned 3.5% over the year, with UK equities (9% of assets) faring slightly better, with a 3.6% return.Tom Joy, director of investments, said: “Performance was again helped by our exposure to smaller companies, particularly in the UK, where our UK smaller companies portfolio returned 13.3% against
 its benchmark of 10.6%.”However, following this strong performance, the fund trimmed its UK allocation to smaller companies and exited completely from smaller company mandates in Continental Europe.Joy said exposure to emerging market equities had been a drag on the global portfolio performance.However, the 8% allocation to defensive equities generated a return of 8%.Private equity performed even better than in 2014, with a 20.2% return.The allocation was increased to 4% over the year and will be further expanded over the next few years.The fund’s fixed interest portfolio, which includes investments in global high-
yield bonds and emerging market
 debt, returned -1.6% during 2015, as credit markets sold off because of concerns over defaults from the collapse in commodity prices.The fund continues to maintain a low weighting to this asset class.However, it continued to increase its allocation to private credit, which returned 14.6% over the year. The Church Commissioners – the investment arm of the Church of England – has announced returns of 8.2% on its £7bn (€8.9bn) portfolio for 2015.Though lower than the 14.4% delivered in 2014, the return is still 2% above the fund’s target of inflation plus 5%.During 2015, the Commissioners focused on making selective sales from the property portfolio and on further diversification, to ensure the portfolio is more defensive in the face of expected market headwinds.This strategy has continued into 2016, when in March, the fund’s assets committee approved the sale of £250m of global equities, increasing cash holdings from 8% (as at end-2015) to just over 11% of total assets.last_img read more

€19bn agriculture sector scheme eyes property investments

first_imgThe €18.7bn Dutch pension fund for the agricultural sector plans to increase its property allocation by more than a quarter, with a focus on sustainable residential property.In its annual report for 2018, BPL said it wanted to increase its allocation to the asset class from 12.8% to 16.5% of its overall portfolio.The scheme added that it also intended to include care homes within the new allocation in an effort to improve diversification and achieve higher returns. It had already cut its  exposure to retail and office properties to 4.5%.Last year, the scheme’s real estate allocation generated a 17.8% return. However, this did not help BPL avoid an overall loss of 0.3% for the year. It attributed the loss to its small caps and emerging market debt allocations, as well as the scheme’s decision to overweight equity at the expense of fixed income.BPL’s equity holdings lost 6.9%, an underperformance of 25 basis points, while fixed income gained 0.9%, outperforming its benchmark by 6bps. The Dutch agriculture sector scheme lost 0.3% in 2018 despite double-digit gains from property investmentsAlternatives gained 7.4%, with infrastructure producing a profit of almost 11%. The latter asset class had reached its final stage and had delivered a high yield on divestment, according to the pension fund.A spokesman for the scheme said BPL was preparing to divest a €20m stake in an agricultural land lease financing fund, as other stakeholders wanted to exit. The investment had returned at least 3.5%, he said.Mixed results from hedgingDue to the appreciation of the euro relative to other currencies, BPL lost 0.9% on its currency hedge of dollar, sterling and yen, and its hedge of global high yield, infrastructure and emerging market debt investments, it said.In contrast, its partial hedge of interest rate risk on its liabilities – enacted through government bonds, residential mortgages and interest swaps – gained 0.7%.BPL said there was a real chance that it would have to cut pension rights and benefits in the near future. Its funding ratio was 102.1% at the end of 2018, and has since dropped to 98.4% as of the end of July.The scheme reported administration costs of €102 per participant. It spent 24bps and 7bps on asset management and transactions, respectively.The industry-wide pension fund has 116,435 active participants, 488,110 deferred members and 68,260 pensioners, affiliated with 14,700 employers.last_img read more

Allowing pets can be the cat’s whiskers for landlords

first_imgFile photo.The REIQ is urging legislators to update laws to allow landlords and tenants to negotiate a position on pets. We don’t want to highlight Victorian reforms as this mandates pet ownership unless landlord can reasonably withhold consent.Most landlords don’t allow pets in their rental properties, hoping to protect their investment and limit any maintenance and repairs that will need to be done after a tenant vacates. Landlords make this decision based on the fear that pets will damage their property. Dogs and cats shed hair and can leave odours throughout the property, especially in carpets and the back yard. As a result, only about 10 per cent of Queensland rental properties allow pets. In Queensland, landlords are currently not permitted to request any additional bond or increased protection to manage the potential increased risks and damage in relation to the property.More than 63% of Australian households own a pet and about 53% own a dog or a cat. More from news01:21Buyer demand explodes in Townsville’s 2019 flood-affected suburbs12 Sep 202001:21‘Giant surge’ in new home sales lifts Townsville property market10 Sep 2020This means there is a large number of families who are excluded from pet ownership because they rent, or, if they have a pet, are locked out of most rental properties. There are many benefits to pet ownership, including companionship, responsibility and, in some cases, improved home security. And it seems unfair to restrict renters from experiencing those benefits, simply by virtue of the fact that they rent. Data suggests there are benefits to landlords to allowing pets in their investment property. Those households with pets tend to move less often and, due to the fact that there are fewer properties that allow pets, and be less likely to break leases to move within a town. There is also some suggestion that people with pets would be open to paying higher rents, and perhaps some version of ‘pet insurance’ to accommodate their furry friends. In a series of decisions QCAT has ruled that absolute pet bans are not permissible in the by-laws that govern apartment and unit living. However, in other instances pet restrictions have been upheld. The REIQ is supportive of greater contractual freedom in this area. This would allow parties to come to a negotiated agreement that permits pets in the rental property while mitigating the issues that landlords may face if they permit pets in the property. A proactive property manager will be able to monitor pet impact on a property and will offer mitigation tips to tenants as condition of rental, to help limit risk of damage. And it’s possible that by allowing pets a landlord may attract a more loyal, long-term tenant.last_img read more

Trophy home sale price revealed: $7m for Clayfield masterpiece

first_imgThe house retains original period features such as leadlight windows and pressed metal ceilings.TOP 10 BRISBANE RESIDENTIAL SALES OF 20181. 110 Virginia Ave, Hawthorne $11.128m2. 27 Sutherland Ave, Ascot $11m3. 33 Moray St, New Farm $11.3m4. 33 Maxwell St, New Farm $8.5m5. 150 Adelaide Street East, Clayfield $7m 6. 30 Windermere Rd, Hamilton $5.95m7. 17 Ningana St, Fig Tree Pocket $5.1m8. Welwyn Cres, Coorparoo $5.025m9. 127 Laurel Ave, Chelmer $5m10. 32 Teneriffe Dr, Teneriffe $4.405m(Source: CoreLogic) One of the six bedrooms in the home at 150 Adelaide Street East, Clayfield.Ray White New Farm agents Christine Rudolph and Matt Lancashire negotiated the sale of the property, which eclipses the previous record for Clayfield of $6.75 million, achieved in 2017 for a property at 108 Oriel Road.It is also the fifth highest residential sale in Brisbane this year according to CoreLogic records, with the biggest sale belonging to a property at 110 Virginia Ave, Hawthorne. The home at 150 Adelaide Street East is on a huge 3300 sqm of land.Daughter Zilla Lyons told The Courier-Mail her parents bought the house in the late 1950s, attracted by its size.“They also needed space for their growing family (the first seven of their eight children were born in nine years) and accommodating all those children necessitated some practical modifications to the original layout,’’ she said. The entry to the home at 150 Adelaide Street East, Clayfield.Other features include ornate plaster and pressed metal ceilings, timber walls and leadlight windows.There are two championship sized tennis courts and a swimming pool. This home at 150 Adelaide Street East, Clayfield, has sold for $7m.A LANDMARK federation home has smashed the price record for one of Brisbane’s most exclusive suburbs and notched up one of the biggest residential sales of 2018.The magnificent property had been the home of the late Sir Edward and Lady Dorothy Williams and their eight children who grew up playing within its massive 3317 sqm grounds.center_img Clonlara at 150 Adelaide Street East, Clayfield, has sold for $7m.But now the century-old home, named Clonlara, will begin a new chapter, after selling for the first time in six decades for the princely sum of $7 million.The Queenslander was home to the late Sir Edward and Lady Dorothy Williams for 60 years. The property comes with two championship-sized tennis courts.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus16 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market16 hours agoSir Edward Williams was a respected Queensland legal identity, a former Queenslander of the Year, Australian of the Year, Father of the Year, Chairman of the Commonwealth Games in 1982 and Commissioner General of Expo 88.Many of the six-bedroom home’s original period features have been preserved including the grand entry foyer which leads to formal dining and lounge rooms. The formal dining room inside the house at 150 Adelaide Street East.This included turning what was originally a billiard room into a “glamorous girls’ dormitory’’ and enclosing a back veranda to provide a large sunroom during winter.She said a little house near the tennis courts was built as a wonderful Christmas present for the girls, which they treated like a large dolls’ house. last_img read more

Gold Coast Castle fit for a king set to go under the hammer

first_img 392 Gilston Rd, Gilston.Agent Josh Thomas, of Ray White Surfers Paradise Group, is marketing the Gilston property and said there was nothing like it in the area.“It’s an iconic piece of real estate,” he said.“Dubbed the ‘Castle of Gilston’, this sprawling majestic grand manor needs to be seen to be believed.“There are certainly not many opportunities to get a castle-like property 25 minutes from the beach.” 392 Gilston Rd, Gilston.IT was a backdrop for Australian actor Paul Hogan’s rags-to-riches biopic and was a pit stop for horses and carriages in the 1800s.Welcome to the “Castle of Gilston” – a sprawling grand manor set on a 2.26ha of land at 392 Gilston Rd. The unusual property built on the western Gold Coast is going under the hammer on March 12.Vendors Tracie and Adam Arnold’s family had the five-bedroom house built over three years in the early 1990s.“Six stonemasons were brought up from Sydney for six months on site to hand carve each and every limestone block laid,” Mrs Arnold said.“Limestone was used for the walls and sandstone for the flooring.” MORE NEWS: Why there are fewer properties on the market MORE NEWS: Where it will cost you $6000 a week in rent 392 Gilston Rd, Gilston. 392 Gilston Rd, Gilston.Fit for royalty, the residence features floor to ceiling windows and archways, a marble staircase and grand water feature.The house was fitted out with French, German and Italian products with a range of timbers used for the doors and window fittings and seven different types of marble.The Arnolds said Paul Hogan filmed part of his self-titled mini series Hoges: The Paul Hogan Story at the house, which doubled as a property he once owned at Byron Bay.There is also plenty of Gilston history attached to the property.“The massive tallowwood tree the front of the property was a stopping point for the Cobb and Co company (coaches) back in the 19th century,” Ms Arnold said.“It was a halfway point between Nerang and Mudgeeraba where they would rest the horses and cook damper by the tree.”The property has been landscaped with pebble paths leading to a tennis court, dam, gazebo and rose garden. There is also a pool and a summer house.More from news02:37International architect Desmond Brooks selling luxury beach villa8 hours ago02:37Gold Coast property: Sovereign Islands mega mansion hits market with $16m price tag1 day ago Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayNext playlist itemMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 2:11Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -2:11 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedQuality Levels720p720pHD540p540p360p360p270p270pAutoA, 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 Rate1xFullscreenAutumn National Market Update02:12last_img read more

Seadrill makes headway with restructuring plans

first_imgLooking ahead, Seadrill said that the offshore drilling market remains challenging and it expects this dynamic to continue in the short to medium term. The majority of customers remain focused on conserving cash and are still reluctant to commit to significant new capital projects offshore until an increased consistency and upward trend in oil prices is demonstrated. The significant rig supply overhang remains and a faster return to a balanced market will require drilling contractors to be more disciplined in retiring older units, the driller said.According to Seadrill, tendering activity has continued at increased levels, albeit from a low base, over the past few months, especially in the North Sea floater and South-East Asia and Middle-East jack-up segments. Market behavior points increasingly to the market having reached its bottom. An increasing number of recent tenders released by oil companies seek to contract at current bottom of cycle dayrates for increased durations and / or with multiple fixed price options periods.“We still believe in the long term fundamentals of the offshore drilling industry, driven by years of under-investment in new fields and the competitiveness of offshore resources on a full cycle basis,” Seadrill concluded.Also on Wednesday, Seadrill promoted its chief commercial officer Anton Dibowitz to the CEO role, to replace Per Wullf starting from July.Offshore Energy Today Staff In the quarterly report on Wednesday, Seadrill said that, during the first quarter 2017, its revenues decreased by 36% to $569 million from $891 million in the same period of 2016.The company’s operating income dropped by 75% totaling $83 million, compared to $328 million in the prior-year quarter.Net income for the first quarter 2017 was $57 million, resulting in basic and diluted earnings per share of $0.13, compared to net profit of $149 million in the same period of 2016.According to the quarterly report, Seadrill’s headcount has been reduced from 6,995 at year end 2015 to 5,196 at the end of the first quarter. Of the 1,799 reduction, 1,380 have been offshore and 419 onshore.Seadrill’s order backlog as at May 24, 2017 is $3.4 billion, comprised of $1.4 billion for the floater fleet and $2 billion for the jack-up fleet. The average contract duration is 13 months for floaters and 30 months for jack-ups. Profit & revenues down  Offshore driller Seadrill has said it has made progress with its restructuring plans which may involve Chapter 11 solution.In April, the company reached an agreement with its bank group to extend the comprehensive restructuring plan negotiating period until July 31, 2017, reflecting significant progress on the terms of such restructuring made with the bank group, Seadrill said in its first quarter 2017 report on Wednesday.The company also said it is now in advanced discussions with certain third party and related party investors and its secured lenders on the terms of a comprehensive recapitalization. Further, the company is in receipt of a proposal from the third party and related party investors which remains subject to further negotiation, final due diligence and documentation.Seadrill is also in discussions with certain bondholders who have recently become restricted again. While discussions with secured lenders and certain investors have advanced significantly, a number of important terms continue to be negotiated and no assurance can be given that an agreement will be reached.The company continues to believe that implementation of a comprehensive restructuring plan will likely involve schemes of arrangement or chapter 11 proceedings, and it is preparing accordingly.It is likely that the comprehensive restructuring plan will require a substantial impairment or conversion of bonds, as well as impairment and losses for other stakeholders, including shipyards.As a result, the company currently expects that shareholders are likely to receive minimal recovery for their existing shares. The company’s business operations remain unaffected by these restructuring efforts and the company expects to continue to meet its ongoing customer and business counterparty obligations. Bottom reachedlast_img read more

LA, Long Beach Ports’ Zero Emission Plan to Cost Up to USD 14 Bn

first_imgThe ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach have set out aggressive near-term and long-term strategies to cut harmful air pollution from all port-related sources to ultimately achieve zero emissions for trucks and terminal equipment.In a draft document titled 2017 Clean Air Action Plan (CAAP) Update the ports revealed detailed steps to be undertaken.“These ports are going where no port has gone before,” said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka.“Based on what we’ve already accomplished to promote healthy, robust trade through our gateway, we’re ready to make history again, looking at a new array of technologies and strategies to further lower port-related emissions in the decades ahead.”According to a preliminary analysis the cost of implementing the 2017 CAAP rages between USD 7 billion and USD 14 billion. Given the magnitude of the investment, the draft plan calls for the ports to intensify their funding advocacy and increase collaboration with their partners to finance the new strategies.The ports claim that the draft 2017 CAAP ushers in a new era of clean air strategies that seek to reduce harmful emissions from port-related sources: ships, trucks, cargo handling equipment, locomotives and harbor craft.Furthermore, the document is said to be in line with local, regional, state and federal standards and regulations, and anticipates clean air regulations under development by the California Air Resources Board.The 2017 CAAP sets new clean air goals focused on reducing greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030 and 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050. The plan carries over previous 2023 targets for cutting other primary pollutants aimed at reducing diesel particulate matter (DPM) 77 percent, sulfur oxides (SOx) 93 percent, and nitrogen oxides (NOx) 59 percent below 2005 levels.The most recent emissions inventories show the ports have surpassed the 2023 DPM and SOx reduction targets and are within striking range of the NOx target. The 2017 CAAP identifies the tougher measures needed to ratchet down harmful emissions to zero or near-zero levels, the statement further adds.The document’s release kicks off a public review and comment period that extends through Sept. 18.The Port of Los Angeles and Port of Long Beach handle approximately 40 percent of the nation’s total containerized import traffic and 25 percent of its total exports.last_img read more