Finnish roundup: Elo hails new business gains, VER laments 3.4% loss

first_imgHanna Hiidenpalo, CIO, EloCIO Hanna Hiidenpalo said: “The return on equity investments fluctuated strongly during the year and turned to a steep decline at the end of the year. The main drivers were the tightening of monetary policy, increasing uncertainty over the development of economic growth, and trade disputes.”She said Elo had decreased its risk level during the year by divesting from emerging markets and shrinking the equity weighting in its portfolio, before the major equity market falls in the last quarter.Of Elo’s unlisted investments, private equity generated the strongest return at 16%, compared with 14.9% in 2017. Other unlisted equities returned 10.6% last year.Within real estate, direct investments generated a 5.7% return versus 7.4% in 2017, and investment funds returned 6.3%, compared with 8.2% the year before.The fund said the real estate investment market was active, but steep increases in prices in Finland over recent years had come to an end.Despite a slight dip in the size of the portfolio – from €23.1bn in 2017 to €22.6bn at the end of 2018 – Elo’s funding position held up, with solvency capital at 1.6 times the solvency limit at the end of the year, unchanged from 2017.VER CEO laments lack of hedging optionsFinland’s state pension fund posted 3.4% loss for 2018 – a year that the buffer fund’s chief said presented scant opportunities for hedging the portfolio.The investment loss represented a steep fall from the 6.6% gain the fund in 2017. Elo, the third largest of Finland’s pensions insurance companies, lost 1.4% on its investments last year but added significant new business.The €22.6bn provider described 2018 as “two-fold” because of its success in winning business. Premiums written for private-sector earnings-related pensions – Elo’s main category of pensions provision – increased to €3.24bn in 2018, from €3.1bn, the firm reported.Chief executive Satu Huber said: “The year was a success in terms of customer transfers. Customers who transferred to Elo from other pension insurance companies increased our premiums written by almost €36m.”Last year marked five years since Elo was created from the merger of LocalTapiola and Pension Fennia, and in each of these years it had increased market share, Huber said. Elo’s investment loss compared to a gain of 7.4% produced in 2017. The firm’s average five-year nominal return was 4.5%, it said.Huber said 2018 was a challenging year for investors, marked by increasing uncertainty in international investment markets.While listed equities lost 10.2%, Elo said that Finnish equities performed the best of any region, despite difficult markets.center_img Timo Viherkenttä, CEO, VERChief executive Timo Viherkenttä said: “The opportunities for hedging the portfolio were poorer than normal because most returns on equities and fixed income instruments were negative.“Finally, a sharp fall in share prices in December swept away the returns for the year as the markets did not recover until early 2019.”In real terms, the fund said its investments made a loss of 4.5%, compared to a positive real return of 6% in 2017.According to Viherkenttä, returns on illiquid fund investments were strong but allocation within the portfolio was limited due to regulations governing VER’s activities.Liquid fixed income investments declined by 1.9% in 2018, compared to a 2% gain the year before, while listed equities fell by 7.4%, after an 11% gain in 2017.The fund, designed to balance out Finland’s central government pension expenditure, reported private equity as its highest returning asset class, generating 13.4%. Infrastructure funds and unlisted real estate investment trusts gained just over 11%.VER said it received €1.4bn in pension contributions last year, and transferred €1.9bn to the government budget. The Helsinki-based pension fund contributes 40% of the state’s annual pension expenditure to the budget every year.The fund’s total investments fell to €18.5bn by the end of last year, from €19.6bn at 2017’s close.last_img read more


Luis Suarez’s wife worried about his ‘image’

first_img Suarez, who is working hard to regain full fitness ahead of football’s possible return, finds himself in a tough spot. His wife, Sofia Balbi, is concerned about a recent change in her husband’s ‘image’.Advertisement Loading… Unable to visit a hairdresser, Suarez’s hair is much longer than people are used to seeing it. read also:Luis Suarez’s return hands Barcelona title advantage Sofia has asked her Instagram followers if it’s time for her to take matters into her own hands and tackle the Uruguayan’s ever-growing trim. FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 Wife of Barcelona striker, Luis Suarez, is worried about his ‘image’ during Spain’s coronavirus lockdown. Promoted Content7 Worst Things To Do To Your PhoneBest & Worst Celebrity Endorsed Games Ever MadeBirds Enjoy Living In A Gallery Space Created For Them6 Extreme Facts About Hurricanes7 Universities Where Getting An Education Costs A Hefty PennyWhich Country Is The Most Romantic In The World?A Hurricane Can Be As Powerful As 10 Atomic Bombs8 Superfoods For Growing Hair Back And Stimulating Its GrowthThe Funniest Prankster Grandma And Her GrandsonThis Guy Photoshopped Himself Into Celeb Pics And It’s Hysterical10 Risky Jobs Some Women Do10 Phones That Can Easily Fit In The Smallest Pocketlast_img read more


Clattenburg back at Stamford Bridge

first_img The matter arose from the Blues’ fiery clash with Manchester United at Stamford Bridge on October 28 with Chelsea making a complaint based on reports from their players. Clattenburg did not referee for four weeks while the FA investigated but the governing body determined the official had no case to answer. Police also dropped their separate inquiry and Chelsea later issued a statement expressing regret at the way it was handled. Since resuming duties Clattenburg has been eligible to referee Chelsea but five months have passed before being appointed to another fixture involving the London club by the Professional Game Match Officials Limited. Chelsea have no issue with the appointment and are ready to welcome Clattenburg back to Stamford Bridge. In a joint statement issued with the Premier League and PGMOL last November, the club said: “Chelsea FC made it clear they would welcome Mark Clattenburg back to Stamford Bridge in the future and PGMOL would have no issue in appointing him to a Chelsea FC match going forward.” Mark Clattenburg is to referee this Sunday’s clash between Chelsea and Swansea, the Premier League has confirmed. It will be the official’s first match involving Chelsea since last autumn’s racism row involving John Obi Mikel. Clattenburg was accused of using “inappropriate language” towards Mikel but was cleared by the Football Association. center_img Press Associationlast_img read more