CZECH REPUBLIC - The number of individuals opting for private insurance has grown by 143,000 this year, according to a report by the Czech News Agency (CTK).
Figures from the Czech Finance Ministry cited in the report show that the number of individuals grew to 2.67 million during the first half of the year and was up by 187,000 during the second quarter alone. A year-on-year comparison showed the number was 178,000 higher than 2002.
The CTK said that the figures reflected the growing realisation that “state-paid pensions are very low and that they [individuals] will have to rely increasingly on their own savings”.
Overall, pension fund clients deposited over Kc64.5bn (e1.98bn) in funds over eight years, of which Kc5.6bn was in this year alone.
Together with state contributions, deposits in pension funds totalled Kc82.72bn at the end of June, up Kc7bn from the beginning of this year.
In addition, more pension funds merged this year, increasing market concentration. At the end of last year, only 12 out of the original 44 funds were operating in the market.
A number of pension schemes have been prompted to lock in gains with a move into bonds after the estimated deficit across FTSE 100 DB pension schemes improved by £36bn, over the 12 months ending 30 June last year, JLT Employment Benefits found.
HM Treasury has agreed in principle to give NEST a £329m contingent liability guarantee in the event of the master trust's wind up or closure.
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