LEADING THE INVESTMENT INDUSTRY

A group of leading investment professionals raising awareness about the impact of current market thinking and behaviours, and to call for immediate action.

LATEST THOUGHT PIECES
February 28, 2018
Long-term investing in public equity markets
Jaap van Dam
In 2015, fifteen Dutch CIOs of asset owners and asset managers wrote an article with the title: ‘Short-term profit or long-term value creation?’ A growing group of pension funds, asset managers, consultants and companies worldwide try to answer this question.
October 26, 2017
Making an impact by defining the right mix of ESG strategies
Pascal Blanqué
Whilst supranational institutions and NGOs have for too long been alone on the front lines of the battle against poverty, corruption, and resource depletion, both companies and the finance sector are now fully aware of the role they have to play in the transition to a more sustainable economy. So-called “megatrends” – demographics, globalisation, the environment, societal evolution – act as disruptive forces and offer growth potential for investors. The motivations of asset owners have evolved; they have become more elaborate, more complex and more meaningful, and now include topics that go beyond the unique consideration of achieving financial performance. Even if performance remains the primary objective, investors now want their portfolios to have an impact on both the environment and society, and want to measure the efficiency of this choice.
March 6, 2017
The Why Question
Saker Nusseibeh
Economics has developed as a science, conveniently forgetting its roots in political philosophy. Unfortunately that ‘science’ is severely dated, and the functioning of the global capital markets has become separated from the real world. A simple thought experiment throws light on the theoretically correct strategies for a rational saver, but leaves us with unsatisfactory answers. Neglecting the societal context of our saving activity only serves to further isolate the capital markets. Instead, a self-perpetuating system requires investors to evolve from simple allocators of capital to its steward, with far broader responsibilities. Maximising holistic returns represents practical action of the responsibility by investors, and stretches far beyond creating wealth simply for its own sake.
February 2, 2017
Using wealth, not returns, to set objectives and measure success
Stefan Dunatov
For asset owners that have liabilities to meet, whether they be pension or endowment funds, or a saver planning for retirement, one of the key questions they must answer is how much wealth they need to generate in order to at least meet those cash-flow requirements. Traditionally, investment objectives and our success in achieving those objectives has been predominantly measured by looking at total returns – the general level of return averaged across the life of the fund in question. For example, a pension fund would need to achieve X% return over its expected life to have sufficient assets to meet its expected liabilities. For an individual saver, what level of assets is enough to ensure they have sufficient funds to live on once they retire? It is becoming increasingly clear, however, that focussing on total returns is not sufficient. These questions may be better answered by looking in greater depth at the level of absolute wealth as a target consistent with a desired objective, and the impact of different paths of return on the likely level of that wealth during the accumulation and spending phases of a fund.
May 9, 2016
Governance practices: Bridging the gap between rhetoric and reality
Sally Bridgeland
Since the 2008 global financial crisis, business models in the pension world have had a big makeover as governance practices, asset allocation and execution capabilities have come under the spotlight.
December 13, 2015
The hidden trade-off in DC pensions
Zuhair Mohammed
DC investors are making a costly trade-off that many are completely unaware of. The focus on daily liquidity in DC pension products might provide members with the ultimate flexibility governments want them to have, but the vast majority of members neither use that flexibility nor realise the hidden cost at which it comes. Research points to a potential gain of five percent or more if DC pension pots were allowed to invest in illiquid assets. As the pensions environment and demographic changes place ever more pressure on individuals’ retirement savings, governments can no longer afford to ignore this issue and must launch consultations on the sense behind both daily liquidity and charge caps. Savers deserve to know about the compromises they are being forced to make. It is time for a serious rethink.
The Traditional Alternative Why Investing Should Return to the Stone Age
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LATEST NEWS & EVENTS
  • November 22, 2018
    300 Club updates its focus to reflect commitment to championing the asset owner
  • September 11, 2018
    Elizabeth Corley joins the 300 Club
    Alan Brown
  • February 28, 2018
    Long-term investing in public equity markets: what does success look like… and how to organise it?
  • February 28, 2018
    Long-term investing in public equity markets
    Jaap van Dam
    In 2015, fifteen Dutch CIOs of asset owners and asset managers wrote an article with the title: ‘Short-term profit or long-term value creation?’ A growing group of pension funds, asset managers, consultants and companies worldwide try to answer this question.
  • December 21, 2017
    Effective ESG investing requires a blended approach
  • October 26, 2017
    The 300 Club: Making an impact by defining the right mix of ESG strategies