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A majority (90 per cent) of U.K. pension funds and insurers say they plan to increase allocations to renewable energy infrastructure in the next 12 months, according to a survey from Alpha Real Capital. The survey, which polled U.K. pension funds and insurers that collectively have roughly £360 billion in assets under management, found more […]

  • By: Staff
  • February 6, 2024 February 5, 2024
  • 11:00
Finding yield and diversification opportunities in small-balance credit

Small-balance credit—a subset of alternative credit gaining traction in the United States as fintech makes modest consumer and business loans more investable—could be a yield generator for institutional investors. In addition, this type of credit could be a solid diversification tool, says Colin Kilgour, principal at Kilgour Williams Capital in Toronto. His firm runs the […]

Plan Sponsor Week: Is it time for bond owners to shift how they view deficits and debt?

While rising government deficits and debt are concerning for many bond owners, they should actually be more concerned that deficits aren’t big enough, said David Bezic, an independent economic consultant, during a session at Benefits Canada and the Canadian Investment Review’s 2020 Plan Sponsor Week in mid-August. Many of the concerns around debt and deficits are founded on […]


U.S. public pension funds can expect to see hurdles from the coronavirus crisis similar to those experienced in past recessions, according to a new report by Cerulli Associates. In the past two recessions, public plans saw a decrease in their funded statuses. “According to survey data gathered form the National Association of State Retirement Administrators, […]

  • By: Staff
  • August 10, 2020 December 6, 2020
  • 08:04
Where can pension funds find returns in a low interest rate environment?

Investors were already feeling the pressures of historically low interest rates. Then came the coronavirus pandemic. The Bank of Canada cut its overnight interest rate at the end of March to an all-time low of 0.25 per cent and announced a plan to spend $5 billion per week on Government of Canada bonds. This came […]

In these uncertain times, will dividend stocks be the first to recover?

Since stock markets can turn on a dime, long-term institutional investors may find some opportunities amid the current chaos. It’s been a long time since genuine panic hit markets, says Greg Taylor, chief investment officer and portfolio manager at Purpose Investments. “Generally, markets hate uncertainty and, arguably, we’ve never had a more uncertain time than […]

What could negative yields mean for Canadian pension plans’ funding statuses?

Globally, negative yielding bonds are alarming investors. And while Canadian government bonds haven’t gone negative, movement in other countries is demonstrating to institutional investors that anything is possible. So if bond yields do go negative, what could this mean for Canadian pension plans’ funding statuses? Canadian defined benefit plans can be valued in three different ways, all […]

  • By: Yaelle Gang
  • November 22, 2019 November 30, 2020
  • 09:05
What will Italy’s new coalition government mean for institutional investors?

As the likelihood of a new Italian coalition government continues to solidify, institutional investors are watching the country’s extremely volatile bond markets. The hard-left Five Star Movement and centre-left Democratic Party have joined forces to avoid snap elections, which would have strongly reinforced the power of Matteo Salvini, the leader of Italy’s far-right League party, says Stephane Dutu, director […]

What drives U.S. state-sponsored pension plans to take bigger risks?

What effect do low interest rates really have on how pension funds invest and what are the long-term consequences? When plan sponsors are underfunded, they have a few set options, according to a new paper by the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. For a state-sponsored plan, the choice of whether to take on assets with higher […]

  • By: Staff
  • July 24, 2019 November 12, 2020
  • 08:30

Though financial markets were volatile and bond yields dropped, Canadian defined benefit pension plans benefited from higher asset returns in November, with median solvency standing at 100.6 per cent, according to Aon’s monthly survey. Among the plans surveyed, 48 per cent were more than fully funded, down just 0.2 percentage points from the end of […]

  • By: Staff
  • December 6, 2018 January 12, 2021
  • 08:30