INCLUDING: UK/CANADA - Hermes signs contract with Algorithmics; UK - 75% choose job based on pension; UK - HSBC launches climate change programme; UK - Permal launches opportunities fund; UK - PPF 7800 index posts £43.6bn drop in September
Hermes Fund Managers Limited (Hermes), which manages the British Telecom pension scheme, has signed a five-year contract for Algo Risk Servicewith Algorithmics, an outsourced risk management and portfolio construction service.
Hermes said it would implement Algo Risk Service immediately in its pension fund management operation. This would include full risk management, portfolio optimisation, stress testing and risk budgeting.
UK - 75% choose job based on pension
Three out of four (75%) workers cited good company pension scheme as an important factor when considering a new job, a survey by Alexander Forbes Financial Services' (AFFS) has found.
This was up from 68% who cited this in the 2007 survey. Overall a pension was the most highly rated employment benefit by staff.
However, 38% of employers said they were unclear about whether their pension was appreciated by their staff and whether it performed effectively as a means of staff recruitment and retention.
UK - HSBC launches climate change programme
HSBC Global Markets is launching a climate change research facilitation programme (Program) in association with Ernst & Young, New Energy Finance, Risk Management Solutions and the UK Met Office.
This programme follows the implementation of the HSBC Climate Change Index, which was launched last September 2007.
HSBC said the Program was open to all fund managers interested in independent research from specialist houses and the number of participants could grow as new research became available.
UK - Permal launches opportunities fund
Fund of hedge funds Permal Investment Management Services is planning to launch a new fund focused on discounted secondary-market investments into existing hedge funds, as distressed investors are forced to exit.
The organisation said the Permal Hedge Fund Opportunities Limited would be seeded by the Group and was planned to launch as early as 1 November 2008.
UK - PPF 7800 index posts £43.6bn drop in September
The aggregate funding position of 7800 defined benefit funds monitored by the Pension Protection Fund fell by £43.6bn in September.
The lifeboat fund's PPF 7800 index found the deficit had worsened from £36.7bn at the end of August 2008 to £80.3bn at the end of September 2008. It said this compares to a surplus of £75.1bn in September 2007.
The PPF said the total deficit of schemes in deficit in September 2008 is estimated to have worsened to £113.5bn from £91.6bn at the end of August. It added the total surpluses of schemes in surplus fell to £33.2bn from £54.9bn at the end of August 2008.
Standard Life has increased exposure to risk assets in three out of five funds in its Active Plus and Passive Plus workplace pension ranges.
Some 48% of employers are unaware of the services or help they offer to members of their defined contribution (DC) schemes, according to Aon.
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