US - New York City comptroller William Thompson has urged the Securities and Exchange Commission to increase transparency and public confidence in the investment activities of all public pension funds.
He also said: "Such uniform regulation will hopefully prevent a recurrence of the type of egregious conduct detailed in the complaints and indictment, and I am sure that you share my concern that appropriate nationwide oversight and regulation of such agents is long overdue."
Thompson said he supported the implementation of the SEC's 1999 proposal to prohibit investment advisors from providing compensated services to public pension funds if the adviser or certain related parties make any contributions to affected elected officials or candidates.
He added: "A uniform prohibition based on the one now in place for brokers and dealers engaging in the municipal securities industry needs to be promulgated as expeditiously as possible in order to increase transparency and public confidence in the investment activities of all public pension funds."
The letter came after two people, involved in the New York ongoing investigation on alleged corruption related to the New York pension funds, pled guilty, while others are still under investigation (Globalpensions.com: 13/05/09).
In addition, comptroller Thompson took steps in the last weeks to cause the New York City Pension Funds to suspend the use of placement agents in their transactions (Globalpensions.com: 6/05/09).
Other US pension funds have already banned the use of placement agents or are planning to do it.
The Centre for Social Justice is calling for the state pension age to be raised to 70 by 2028 and to 75 by 2035, a much faster rise than currently planned.
The High Court has blocked the £12bn transfer of Prudential's annuity book to Rothesay Life, citing the insurer's lack of "established reputation" and differing "capital management policies".
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