Month: September 2020

Month: September 2020

first_imgOPF, the €950m pension fund of copier manufacturer Océ, is planning to join the €31.6bn metal scheme PME on 1 January 2014.To provide its 8,250 participants with a good starting position, employer Canon is willing to grant them an additional contribution, according to the scheme.This “dowry” is to account for the effect of the rights cut of almost 4.1% last August, it added.OPF said the scale of the employer’s donation, as well as the rights to be transferred to PME, would depend on the pension fund’s financial position at year-end. Currently, OPF and Canon are in consultations with PME and the social partners.They still need the approval of the scheme’s participant council and the Dutch regulator.As of the end of August, OPF’s coverage ratio was 103.1%, thanks to the recent rights discount and an additional employer’s contribution of €91m.In June, the scheme’s coverage was 88.8%.PME reported coverage of 98.5% in August.The metal scheme has more than 632,000 participants affiliated with almost 1,300 employers.Its required minimum funding at the end of this year is 105%.last_img read more


Month: September 2020

first_imgSavers within the defined contribution (DC) space in the UK market do not realise the inherent investment risk within their pensions, research has shown.In a comprehensive report, the National Employment Savings Trust (NEST), the government-backed auto-enrolment vehicle, said a combination of consumers’ lack of trust in finance and identification as savers, not investors, was a concern for the industry.Within the master trust, members can access a default investment strategy alongside a range of funds catering for different risk tolerances and ESG factors.However, NEST identified a “profound information asymmetry” leading members to distance themselves from pensions, assuming they have no impact on the performance on their fund. It also found DC members fail to separate volatility and risk as concepts, leading to a preference towards savers wanting a lower, more certain outcome rather than volatility.Paul Todd, assistance investment director at NEST, said members did not see themselves as investors, and that the very concept of investment was suspect.“When thinking about retirement income, it is conservative,” he said. “So a pension seems light-years away from stock markets, volatility and risk.”However, the research also found that, while volatility was negative, guarantees were not viewed positively, and respondents felt that certainty should not be provided at additional cost.The report highlighted that the perception of guarantees was not necessarily tied up with returns and capital protection.Rather, many respondents referred to them as a “scam”, where providers were not confident about protecting members’ pensions.Todd said individual investors should be at the heart of product design, rather than the industry assuming it knows best.“There has been a tendency that, if we shout louder, then the consumer will understand it – it is the wrong way of looking at this,” he said.“A lot of this needs to be bringing consumers into a dialogue about the development of products.“The concept of investment at the moment is a black box for savers, where they see money go in and are not sure what happens.“We need to find a way of making equities and bonds more tangible.”The research showed investors wanted products that met concerns about volatility and extreme losses, but had a plan for managing these issues.“A lot of people said they would just like a cash product, which is a concern for the industry, as they do not see equities as a suitable way to secure a retirement income,” Todd said.“We need to sell the concept that risk is a good thing, [though] the word has a negative concept, and at least demonstrate we have a plan for when things go wrong.”last_img read more


Month: September 2020

first_imgDaniel Ben-Ami questions the wisdom of excluding fossil fuel investmentIt is a tragedy that a basic truth has been forgotten. The world is going to need huge amounts more energy for everyone to achieve reasonable living standards.Recent World Bank statistics on global poverty make sobering reading. The trend is improving over time, but, in 2012, there were still 896m people living on less than $1.90 a day. More than 2.1bn people were living on less than $3.10 a day.For such people to enjoy Western living standards, it will be necessary for them to have levels of energy consumption on a par with the developed world. The same is true for the billions more who are not in dire poverty but whose income levels are still well below those of the West. That means there is a moral imperative to strive for a world in which far more energy is produced. The alternative – whatever politically correct language it is dressed up in – means condemning billions to remain in poverty. That may be the preferred option of the West’s green-tinged elite, but it should not be acceptable to the rest of us.In the abstract, it does not matter where the energy comes from. The key criterion should be pragmatic – whatever works best. The priority should be to produce as much energy as cheaply and efficiently as possible.In practice, at least in the short and medium term, the vast bulk will come from fossil fuels. According to the BP Statistical Review of World Energy 2015, fossil fuels (oil, natural gas and coal) accounted for 86% of world energy consumption in 2014 compared with less than 3% for all forms of renewables (wind, geothermal, solar, biomass and waste). That is despite a huge drive by many Western governments over many years to promote renewables and stigmatise fossil fuel use. It is also worth remembering that many environmental campaigners also reject nuclear energy (about 4% of global consumption) and hydroelectric power (about 7%). Of course, it is impossible to say for certain what will happen in the more distant future. It could be that nuclear fusion – generating enormous amounts of energy by fusing hydrogen atoms together – will finally fulfil its promise. Or possibly solar energy will be harnessed on a much larger scale. Alternatively, an energy source barely recognised at present might come into its own.What is certain, as things stand, we live in a world where billions of people live in a state of scarcity. That is a huge waste of human potential. It is not some hypothetical future catastrophe but one that is all too present and real. For the time being, at least, boosting energy production by all means available – including fossil fuels – is the truly moral choice.Daniel Ben-Ami is deputy editor at IPElast_img read more


Month: September 2020

first_imgIn addition, signatories are expected to be transparent on their voting and engagement policy, its implementation, as well as their full equity holdings.Among the most striking elements of the code’s 11 principles is a rule requiring companies to demand the return of shares loaned to shortsellers prior to an annual general meeting (AGM) with controversial voting issues on the agenda. This way the shortseller can’t use the borrowed voting rights against the interest of the company.In addition, if an investor has a short position exceeding its long-term holdings, it must refrain from voting.Rients Abma, Eumedion’s director, told Dutch financial daily Het Financieele Dagblad (FD) that the new code would broaden shareholders’ responsibilities.“The shareholder must be willing to not only engage with the board, but also get to know the feelings of important stakeholders in case of important issues, such as remuneration policy or takeovers,” Abma said.This means consulting the works council and clients as well as suppliers. Ahead of engagement, the investor must also be prepared to show the company its full position, including derivatives, according to the new principles. If an investor votes against a proposal during an AGM, the company’s board is entitled to demand a reason.Commenting on the draft code, the association of securities-issuing institutions (VEUO) indicated that the new code offered little added value relative to the pending European directive.”We would have liked a further elaboration of sustainability and long-term value creation,” the FD quoted Harm-Jan Kluiver, the secretary of VEUO, as saying. Eumedion, the Dutch platform for corporate governance and sustainability, has presented a draft Stewardship Code for investors focusing on engagement and responsible ownership at Dutch listed companies.The code is to replace its “Best Practices for Engaged Share-ownership”, which have been applied by almost all of its participants, predominantly Dutch but also foreign pension funds, insurers and asset managers. In total Eumedion has 65 members representing €5trn of assets.The forum said it had transformed the best practices into an official code of conduct in anticipation of new European obligations and responsibilities for institutional investors, which will come into force as of June 2019.The draft emphasises informed voting and investors’ willingness to conduct a constructive dialogue with companies, other shareholders and stakeholders.last_img read more


Month: September 2020

first_imgAP3’s 0.6% gain after costs compared to the 8.8% return it recorded in 2017. In absolute terms, the net result was a SEK2.2m profit in 2018, down from SEK28.2bn a year before.Last week, its Gothenburg-based sister fund AP2 reported a 1.3% loss from its investments for 2018. Sweden’s AP3 posted a 0.6% return last year on the back of private markets and currency investments.The SEK340.7bn (€32.2bn) fund – one of the four main buffer funds backing Sweden’s state pension – said its slim profit illustrated the importance of holding a mix of listed and unlisted assets.Kerstin Hessius, AP3’s chief executive, said: “I am pleased to report a positive return of 0.6% at the end of a year in which equities, our most important asset class, generated a negative contribution to total return of 4.7 percentage points.“However, thanks to our real estate investments, other unlisted assets and our currency positions we succeeded in more than offsetting this weak market return.” Kerstin Hessius, CEO, AP3Hessius highlighted recent investment rule changes for the AP funds, passed by Sweden’s parliament at the end of November, which she said would “promote the integration of sustainable practices and portfolio diversification”.In its annual report, AP3 said that after making payments of SEK6.8m into the pension system during 2018 – down from the SEK7.4m it paid in 2017 – it ended the year with SEK340.7bn of assets in total, down from SEK345.3bn 12 months before.Over the last five years, AP3 has produced an average annual return of 7.8%, while its benchmark income index rose by 2% a year on average.The income index is a reference for keeping pensions in line with average wage increases.last_img read more


Month: September 2020

first_imgBut their favourite feature is the tropical gardens which they have developed over the years.“We are both keen gardeners and that’s probably what has kept us here so long,” he said.The property is set to hit the market through Mark Saveall of McGrath Estate Agents.“I don’t think there is another house like it on the Gold Coast within 5km of the ocean,” he said.“These types of houses are a dying breed unfortunately.“But they are the perfect design for our climate – they are the original open-plan home.” Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayNext playlist itemMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:58Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:58 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedQuality Levels720p720pHD432p432p216p216p180p180pAutoA, selectedAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.This is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreenHow much do I need to retire?00:58 MORE NEWS: Renovated castle has ‘secret’ room Pam and Lloyd Nugent are selling their property Two Views after having lived there for 25 years. Pic Tim Marsden“But I could always see it had potential to be a nice home.”Over the years the pair breathed new life into the house — they installed new kitchens, French doors and casement windows.More from news02:37International architect Desmond Brooks selling luxury beach villa13 hours ago02:37Gold Coast property: Sovereign Islands mega mansion hits market with $16m price tag2 days agoThe three-bedroom residence features a pool, fire pit, open plan kitchen, living and dining areas as well as an outdoor entertaining area.Mr Nugent said its location at 13 Ernest St initially sparked their interest.“For us it’s up on the hill and it’s an ideal spot,” he said.“It also gave us a project to work on.”MORE NEWS: Melbourne family will live like The Jetsons Pam and Lloyd Nugent are selling their property Two Views after having lived there for 25 years. Pic Tim MarsdenWIDE verandas decorated with fretwork, open-plan living areas, wooden floors and casement windows.The Gold Coast is not known for traditional Queenslander-style houses but Lloyd and Pam Nugent are hoping theirs will strike a chord with house hunters.The 100-year-old Queenslander in Labrador is up for sale at offers over $899,000.As well as a raft of traditional features from the early 1900s, the property comes with an extensive history. “The people who owned it originally could see the Hinterland and they could see the Broadwater so they called it Two Views,” Mr Nugent said.“When we bought it people used to say to us ‘you bought Two Views’ — it was talked about a lot in the area.”The pair, both retired, paid $150,000 for the property in 1996 but said it was in desperate need of a revamp.“It had been terribly neglected,” he said.last_img read more


Month: September 2020

first_img RETIRE TO AN ACTIVE LIFESTYLE MORE REAL ESTATE NEWS: AUSTRALIA’S BEST BEACH HOUSE BARGAINS Mr Rothe said build to rent differed slightly from the traditional investor market.The model sees large institutional investors, such as superannuation funds or real estate investment trusts (REITS) fund projects specifically for the rental market, rather than for sale.They then manage the buildings, while appliances are often included in the rent, and longer leases of up to five years are available.“Build to rents are set up to make the tenant feel valued,” Mr Rothe said.“They are all managed and maintained by a manager, if an appliance breaks down or wears out it’s not the tenant’s problem, and they are also offered security of tenure.“If they wish to move from a one-bedroom to a two-bedroom flat in the same building, they can do so easily because the same landlord owns all apartments.”center_img A render for a build to rent project under development in Richmond, Victoria.Mr Rothe said build to rent had become a popular option overseas, with the model now accounting for 27 per cent of property investment in the US, and 14 per cent of property investment in the UK, but it was yet to gain a foothold in Australia.Meanwhile, he noted the model helped address a rental housing shortage, while also offering a solid income to institutional investors.It also catered to a shift in thinking when it came to housing, he said.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus11 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market11 hours ago“There is a definite shift in the way millennials live. They are living where they want to work and investing elsewhere and that may not necessarily be bricks and mortar.“The high-quality service offered by build to rent and the security of tenure means these tenants also want to stay.“Build to rent offers better services, tenure and a community feel – it’s home.”Rothelowman currently has a build to rent project in the planning stages at 28 Robertson St, Fortitude Valley.The block will include 88 units, and Mr Rothe noted the development would have “excellent communal and residential amenities”, retail on the ground floor, a mix of apartment sizes and storage.He said Brisbane was also likely to see more build to rent projects.“Brisbane makes a lot of sense because the land is often cheaper than in markets like Sydney and Melbourne.“Build to rent is a sector that’s here to stay and there is growing interest.” Rothelowman currently has a build to rent project in the planning stages on 28 Robertson Street, Fortitude Valley.Build to rent developments are gaining traction in Brisbane as institutional investors embrace a global trend.Shane Rothe of design services firm, Rothelowman, said during the past five years there had been a definite increase in build to rent in Australia.His firm has 1000 build to rent units under construction, with 88 under way in Fortitude Valley and he believes there’s more to come.last_img read more


Month: September 2020

first_imgImage source: USACEThe Town of Plymouth Department of Public Works is seeking a permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England District, to conduct work in waters of the U.S. to dredge and do other work in Plymouth Harbor at Water Street and Town Wharf in Plymouth, Mass.  The proposed work involves dredging of approximately 1,500 cubic yards of material to approximately 5-6 feet below/waterward of the mean high water (MHW) elevation, the discharge of fill material into approximately 5,400 square feet (0.12) acre of tidal waters of the U.S. in order to facilitate expansion (relocation) of an existing 235-foot portion of a seawall approximately 15 feet seaward (NNE) of the existing high tide line.The project also involve additional discharge of approximately 600 square feet of material (new riprap) for shoreline protection and stormwater improvements including relocation of an existing outfall.All dredged material will either be reused onsite as fill material (to the extent practicable and permissible) or disposed of at a suitable upland site well-removed from waters of the U.S. Additional work includes installation of additional boardwalks, overlooks, parapets and other infrastructure improvements, according to USACE.Public comments on this work proposed by the Plymouth Department of Public Works should be forwarded no later than September 21, 2017 to the New England District’s Regulatory Division, said USACE.[mappress mapid=”24369″]last_img read more



Month: September 2020

first_imgGranada Material Handling recently delivered its 1000th wind farm davit crane as part of its contract to supply cranes to Ørsted’s 1.2GW Hornsea Project One offshore wind farm.Each of the wind farm’s Siemens Gamesa 174 7MW turbines will require a davit crane and Granada is assembling and testing the cranes at its facility near Manchester. Each crane weighs approximately 3,000 kilograms and has the lifting capacity of one tonne.They will be fixated to the foundation platform next to the turbine tower, to help lift parts and tools from the crew transfer vessels to the turbines.Mark Sidwell, director of Granada Material Handling Ltd, said: “We are extremely pleased to have reached this prestigious milestone in our delivery programme; this is testament to our tried, tested and proven product and also our strong UK supply chain. With the recently announced contract wins for Granada at East Anglia 1 and Hornsea Offshore wind farms we expect a busy year ahead.’’Granada is currently working with several wind farm developers on new projects and will announce further projects shortly.last_img read more