UK / US - Swiss Re is shutting down its variable annuities and pensions business in a bid to scale back retirement-related activities.
Swiss Re confirmed all 18 posts are at risk of redundancy and said it was currently undertaking the appropriate consultations with the permanent staff concerned.
It said key structuring staff could be transferred to its life & health division and key people dealing with pricing, modelling and hedging capabilities might be retained within the asset management division.
Swiss Re spokesman Tim Dickenson said: "We continually adjust our core activities and ensure we dedicate our capital to businesses with the highest risk-adjusted earnings potential.
"Retirement-related activities are facing challenging market environment, and we expect this to persist into 2010/11. Profitability of these businesses will be reduced by various factors, including the higher costs of hedging financial market risk."
"The current market environment therefore makes the outlook for these businesses less promising for the coming 12-24 months so we took the decision to scale back our marketing and structuring activities in the pensions area."
The Co-operative Group's Somerfield Pension Scheme has completed a buy-in with Pension Insurance Corporation (PIC), insuring the benefits of its pensioner members.
Caroline Rookes CBE and Michele Hirons-Wood have joined The Pension Superfund's board of trustees to focus on maintaining governance standards and safeguarding member benefits.
The first specialist independent firm advising pension schemes on bulk annuities or moving to a consolidator has been set up with ambitions to shake up the market.