DC Investment Forum

October 05-06, 2017
Park Hyatt Hotel, Toronto

Benefits Canada is pleased to announce the 10th Annual Defined Contribution Investment Forum.

The theme of this year's conference is:

Optimizing outcomes

With the defined contribution industry growing quickly and predicted to make up a much bigger portion of total pension assets in Canada in the coming years, how can the retirement industry ensure plan members are on the right track? Whether it’s younger workers starting out or older employees nearing retirement who have to figure out how to live on their pot of money, it’s crucial for them to have the tools to make the best decisions. How can plan sponsors and the DC pension industry help plan members optimize their outcomes? The DC Investment Forum will explore the solutions.

The DC Investment Forum is an exclusive, educational event that will bring together senior representatives from Canada’s largest DC pension plans, their consultants, as well as academics and leading providers. Stakeholders will gather to share their views, practices and theories on this increasingly important retirement planning strategy.

The event is free for senior DC plan decision-makers.

Please note: Due to the limited availability of space, any plan sponsors who require accommodation the evening of October 5th must now contact Joanne Boccia directly for arrangement.

Attendance is subject to approval. Please contact Alison Webb.

Tweet questions before or during the event to #DCIF17 and @BenCanMag.

DC Investment Forum

October 5-6, 2017
Park Hyatt Hotel, Toronto
(*Please note this is a draft and subject to change)

October 5:

5:30 p.m.

Cocktail Reception

6:30 p.m.

October 6:

7:30-8:25 a.m.
Breakfast and Registration

8:25-8:30 a.m.
Opening Remarks

8:30-9:30 a.m.
Opening keynote address: More information on this session to be announced shortly

Kelly Peters, chief executive officer, BEworks

9:30-10:00 a.m.
Fixed Income: Is it Working Hard Enough?

Fixed income investments have been a core holding in many investment portfolios. Their primary purpose has been to provide income and diversification, often with a low risk profile to support downside protection. This session will review key features of traditional Canadian fixed income investments, discuss potential challenges and explore opportunities to support the ongoing fulfilment of their primary purpose.

Kathrin Forrest,
portfolio manager, Sun Life Global Investments

10:00-10:30 a.m.
Networking Break

10:30-11:00 a.m.
Expanding the Opportunity Set into Global and International Equity Markets
The discussion will focus on allocation considerations when investing beyond North America, with a particular focus on how global, EAFE and international small-cap equities can provide increased alpha and reduce overall risk and correlation.

Jason White,
portfolio specialist, equity division, T. Rowe Price

11:00-11:30 a.m.
Changing the Culture of Retirement

Around the world, institutions and governments are asking individuals to take more responsibility for their retirement outcomes.  In particular, when we have low capital market expectations and low interest rates that prevail today, it becomes more critical than ever to “re-think” how our Defined Contribution systems can help individuals manage the journey towards retirement success. This talk will explore emerging tools and techniques that combine the intellectual property and insights of institutional investing with the power of technology and modern design, to help individuals make more informed choices regarding saving, investing and spending, to meet and maintain their goals over time.

Chip Castille, managing director, global retirement strategy group, BlackRock

11:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Target Retirement Funds: Excellence and complexity are not the same

When it comes to retirement planning, participants are faced with what can be an overwhelming number of choices.  By simplifying this decision-making process, plan sponsors can increase member participation and contribution levels. Join us for a discussion on how plan sponsors can better manage their fiduciary responsibilities, while assisting participants to achieve their retirement goals. John Croke, Vanguard's head of multi-asset product management will discuss what to look for when evaluating your plans TRF options ensuring your plan is built with a stability, transparency and sophistication.

John Croke, head of multi-asset product management, The Vanguard Group

12:00 - 1:00 p.m.

1:00-1:30 p.m.
Fulfilling fiduciary obligations – how to design a plan for member success in retirement

Fulfilling fiduciary obligations means helping members achieve retirement success.  Even though some members may leave the plan at retirement, there are strategies that can help boost their outcomes while they are in the plan.  In this session, we will explore how you can fulfill your fiduciary obligation by improving member retirement readiness through plan design and investment solutions.  We will also model the outcomes of using these strategies.

Ruthann Pritchard, institutional portfolio manager, Fidelity Investments

1:30 - 2:30 p.m.
Panel: More details to be announced shortly

2:30 - 3:30 p.m.
Closing keynote address: More details to be announced shortly

Bonnie-Jeanne MacDonald, academic researcher, department of economics, Dalhousie University

3:30 p.m.
Closing Remarks

DC Investment Forum Conference Speakers


Kelly Peters

Kelly Peters

Kelly Peters is the chief executive officer of BEworks, a global firm that specializes in applying behavioural economics to business and policy challenges. The team consists of scientists from the fields of psychology, economics, and neuroscience. Prior to this, Peters led innovation teams at the Royal Bank of Canada, Bank of Montreal, CANOE, and Financial Post. She has over twenty years of experience in financial services strategy and IT innovation, a master of business administration from Dalhousie, and is a fellow at the Institute of Canadian Bankers. She is an influential thought-leader in the field of behavioural economics, is an experienced TEDx and keynote speaker, and a lecturer of applied behavioural science at University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management.

Bonnie-Jeanne MacDonald

Bonnie-Jeanne MacDonald

Bonnie-Jeanne MacDonald is a fellow of the Society of Actuaries and an academic researcher in the Department of Economics at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Canada.  Her research focuses on financial security for an aging population, asking questions such as: How should retirement income adequacy be assessed?  How should retirees draw down their savings?  How much might poor financial market returns affect the financial security of Canadian seniors? Her goal is to address these and other questions from a holistic perspective by comprehensively incorporating and integrating the often-ignored elements of retirement financial security such as home ownership, medical expenses, the financial circumstances of family members, and the government's complex and interacting tax and transfer system. She received the 2001 gold medal in actuarial science at the University of Western Ontario in Canada, and a doctorate in actuarial mathematics at Heriot-Watt University in Scotland.  In 2011, she was selected as one of the top 'young economists' by the Canadian government to attend the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting in Germany.  Her work also won the ICA 2014 Pension, Benefits and Social Security Scientific Committee Award Prize for best paper at the 30th International Congress of Actuaries in April 2014.


Chip Castille

Chip Castille

Chip Castille, managing director, is BlackRock's chief retirement strategist heading the global retirement strategy group. He is responsible for managing global retirement opportunities across geographies and products, including the ongoing evolution of our LifePath and CoRI product suites. Prior to his current role, he was head of BlackRock's U.S. Retirement Group, which included the U.S. and Canada defined contribution group. Castille is a member of BlackRock's global operating committee. Castille's current service with the firm dates back to 2007, including his years with Barclays Global Investors (BGI), which merged with BlackRock in 2009. At BGI, he was head of U.S. defined contribution product development. Prior to joining BGI in 2007, he was a managing director at Wilshire Associates and chief investment officer for Wilshire Funds Management. During an earlier stint with BGI, from 1993 to 1999, Castille was part of the team that developed LifePath portfolios, the industry's first target date fund, in 1993. In 1997, he developed BGI's portfolio works, a software solution that helped clients optimize manager structures. Castille's investment management experience includes expertise in solving asset allocation, manager selection and structure problems. He co-authored Optimizing Manager Structure and Budgeting Manager Risk (Journal of Portfolio Management) with John Pirone and Duane Whitney, which received the Bernstein Fabozzi/Jacobs Levy award for outstanding article in 2000.Castille earned a bachelor of arts in journalism from Louisiana State University in 1987 and a master of business administration from Loyola University in 1989. Castille is a contributing author on the iShares blog and serves on a variety of retirement industry boards.

John Croke

John Croke

John Croke, chartered financial analyst, is the head of multi-asset product management in the Vanguard portfolio review department, responsible for Vanguard target retirement funds and the overall product strategy. He also partners with Vanguard Investment Strategy Group on asset allocation for Vanguard's global multi-asset class products. Before joining Vanguard, Croke was director of pension investments at Pfizer Inc. Before that role, he was vice-president of equity research at Jefferies and Co. Croke earned a bachelor of science in economics from Vanderbilt University and a master of business administration in finance from New York University’s Stern School of Business. He is a chartered financial analyst and is a member of the CFA Institute and the CFA Society of Philadelphia.

Kathrin Forrest

Kathrin Forrest

Kathrin Forrest, chartered financial analyst, is a portfolio manager at Sun Life Global Investments. Her responsibilities include managing the firm’s investment solutions, with a specific focus on multi-manager, multi-asset portfolios. Prior to joining Sun Life Global Investments, Forrest was assistant vice-president of product and strategy at Sun Life Investment Management. In this role, she oversaw all aspects of the product development process across Sun Life Investment Management's group of institutional investment management companies. Prior to that, Forrest was assistant vice-president of investment consulting, helping to build out Sun Life's international investment centre and overseeing consulting, product and asset allocation functions. Forrest originally joined Sun Life in 2004 as an investment analyst within the firm's group retirement services division. Forrest holds a master of arts in economics and is a chartered financial analyst. She is an active member at the CFA Society Toronto, serving on various committees including continuing education and governance and nominations.

Ruthann Pritchard

Ruthann Pritchard

Ruthann Pritchard is an institutional portfolio manager in the global asset allocation group at Fidelity Investments. In this role, Pritchard serves as a member of the investment management team, maintaining a deep knowledge of portfolio philosophy, process, and construction, assisting portfolio managers and their chief investment officers in ensuring portfolios are managed in accordance with client expectations, and contributing to investment thought leadership in support of the team. She is also a principal liaison for portfolio management to a broad range of current and prospective clients and internal partners, providing detailed portfolio reviews and serving as a key conduit of client objectives, requirements, and marketplace insight back to the investment team. Pritchard’s focus is on target date strategies. Prior to assuming her current position in January 2014, Pritchard was vice-president, investment consultant, in personal workplace investments, a unit of Fidelity Investments, from 2006 to 2014. Before joining Fidelity in 2006, she was a vice-president at JPMorgan Asset Management and JPMorgan Retirement Plan Services from 2000 to 2006, an associate investment consultant at Evaluation Associates from 1996 to 2000, and a research analyst at Target Investors from 1993 to 1996. Previously, Pritchard worked as an associate at First Boston from 1987 to 1991, and as an analyst/associate at Goldman Sachs from 1984 to 1987. She has been in the investments industry since 1984. Pritchard earned a bachelor of science in applied mathematics and mechanical engineering from Yale University. She also holds the financial industry regulatory authority series 6, 63, 7, and 3 licenses.

Jason White

Jason White

Jason White is a portfolio specialist in the equity division of T. Rowe Price. He is a member of the international equity investment team, participates in investment strategy calls, and regularly travels with other investment professionals to visit companies around the world. White is a vice-president of T. Rowe Price Group, Inc., and T. Rowe Price International Ltd. White has 16 years of investment experience, 13 of which have been at T. Rowe Price. Prior to joining the firm in 2004, White was a principal of State Street Global Advisors and an investment analyst on the global active equity investment team, where he covered various non-U.S. equity strategies.White earned a bachelor of arts in economics from Kenyon College, a master of engineering operations research from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and a master of business administration in finance from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.



For information on the conference, please contact Lauren Harris, Conference Editor, Benefits Canada

The Park Hyatt Hotel, Toronto

Property Location
Immerse yourself in one of the world's most multicultural cities as a distinguished guest at Park Hyatt Toronto. Perfectly situated in the fashionable Yorkville area, our hotel in Toronto, Canada represents an elite level of luxury marked by subtle contemporary influence. Surrounded by retail and five-star restaurants, our hotel is within walking distance to some of downtown’s most renowned attractions, including the Royal Ontario Museum.

4 Avenue Road
Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M5R 2E8
Tel: +1 416 925 1234

For information on the hotel or the event logistics, please contact Joanne Boccia, experience manager, TC Media.

Please note: Due to the limited availability of space, any plan sponsors who require accommodation the evening of October 5th must now contact Joanne Boccia directly for arrangement.

TwitterTweet questions before or during the event to #DCIF17 and @BenCanMag