SCOTLAND - The £480m Inverness-based Highland Council Pension Fund has become the latest regional scheme to take the master custodian route with the appointment of Northern Trust (Northern).
Northern replaces the preferred custodians of Highland’s investment managers Rothschild Asset Management and Baillie Gifford - Rothschild and (Chase Manhattan as sub-custodians), and Bank of New York (BoNY) respectively.
Treasury management officer Roger Niven said that the move was partly spurred by cost-cutting considerations. He added that custodian arrangements had not been reviewed since Rothschild started at the fund back in the 1970s, and BoNY during the 1990s.
Recently Northern claimed to have captured around 20% of the UK's local authority market including wins at the £930m Dundee County Council and the £430m Haringey Pension Fund. The £420m Northumberland County Council Pension fund also hired the firm earlier this year when Bank of New York and Schroder Investment Management were dropped.
Currently Highland’s consultant Hymans Robertson is conducting an actuarial valuation after which an asset liability study will follow.
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