INCLUDING: GLOBAL - Hewitt names co-presidents; US - PBGC takes on Auburn hospital pensions; UK - IMA joins accounting standards debate
Eric Fiedler and Yvan Legris have been named co-presidents of Hewitt Associates' consulting business. Fiedler, who currently leads Hewitt's Asia Pacific consulting business, and Legris, who heads its UK consulting and benefits outsourcing businesses, will take up their positions on 1 October. As part of this leadership transition, Perry Brandorff, current global president of consulting, and Roger Parkin, current European consulting leader, are leaving Hewitt.
US - PBGC takes on Auburn hospital pensions
The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) has assumed responsibility for the pensions of more than 1,500 workers and retirees of non-profit medical centre Auburn Memorial Hospital. The PBGC stepped in after a bankruptcy court found that Auburn Memorial would not be able to survive outside of bankruptcy protection unless each of its four underfunded pension plans ended. The agency also moved to assume the plans because nearly $13m in required contributions to the plans were due and unpaid.
UK - IMA joins accounting standards debate
The Investment Management Association has joined those opposed to proposals in the Accounting Standards Board's (ASB) discussion paper on the financial reporting of pension funds, warning that discounting pension liabilities using the risk free rate could lead to the closure of more defined benefit plans. Liz Murrall, director, corporate governance and reporting, IMA, also warned that the proposal was likely to drive pension schemes into more conservative asset allocation, accelerating the trend towards bonds as seen in recent years, and reducing returns over time.
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.
AMP Capital has set up a dedicated team to help institutional investors, including pension funds, invest in infrastructure through direct equity allocations.