CZECH REPUBLIC - Czech pension funds' profits fell from CZK3.5bn (US$176.4m) to CZK2.2bn (US$110.8m) year-on-year in the January-September period, according to data released by the National Association of Pension Funds (APF).
"Several pension schemes chose to switch to bonds with shorter durations and those delivered a lower coupon."
Despite decreasing profits, Rusnok said the sector was still in good health and had survived the crisis virtually unscathed so far.
He added strict national regulations imposed a very conservative long term investment approach, with Czech pension funds largely overweight government bonds and cash.
In terms of asset values, data showed equities were the assets to decrease the most. At the end of September last year equities' holdings were valued at CZK10bn (US$503.4m), while this year equities were at CZK7.7bn (US$387.5m).
By contrast, holdings in cash almost doubled during the same period of time. At the end of September 2007, Czech pension plans were holding CZK12.4bn (US$622.2m) in bank and term deposits, while this year cash held was CZK22.2bn (US$1.1bn).
APF also reported the number of active participants went from 3.8 million at the end of September 2007 to 4.2 million at the end of September this year.
The Association of Pension Funds of the Czech Republic was established in 1996. It is a voluntary joint-interest association of legal persons, in particular pension funds.
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