Fixed income lifts Spanish pension fund returns over first half

first_img“The 10-year German bund ended June with a negative yield, while Spanish 10-year government bonds finished with a 1.25% yield, very close to the historic low of March 2015.“In this way, pension plans with exposure to long-term fixed income achieved very positive returns over the year.”Average annualised returns for Spanish occupational funds were 5.03% for the three years to 30 June 2016, and 4.77% for the five years to that date.As of the end of June, total assets under management for the occupational pensions sector stood at €34.9bn, a decrease of 2.2% over the past year.The number of participants remains stable, at just over 2m.Total pension assets, including those in individual plans, amount to €103bn.The biggest single component of pension fund portfolios – 31.8% – is still invested in Spanish government bonds, with a further 17.9% in Spanish corporate bonds.Since December 2015, there has been a slight dip – 1.5% – in government bonds, with a 2% rise in corporate bonds.Fixed income investments outside Spain make up 8.2% of portfolios, giving a total of 57.9% for fixed income as a whole.Equity allocations are slowly increasing, making up 23.1% of portfolios as of the end of June (8.4% domestic, 14.7% non-domestic) compared with 22.6% at end-2015, and 21.4% at the end of June 2015.Meanwhile, the slight shift to non-domestic assets over the past year has consolidated, with 22.9% of portfolios now invested outside Spain at the end of June 2016, compared with 19.4% a year previously.Xavier Bellavista, principal at Mercer, said: “The reduction in the level of risk has been happening in the past few months, anticipating the uncertainties we expected for 2016, such as interest rate decisions and Brexit.“When these events happened, we did not see many short-term reactions, as most occupational pension funds had reduced their risk levels.“However, they are following the situation to see if they need to further adjust or reduce their level of risk.”Mercer’s Pension Investment Performance Service (PIPS) shows non-EU fixed income was the best-performing asset class over the six months to the end of June 2016, returning 5%.EU fixed income, which Bellavista considers to have been regarded as a safe haven by investors, returned 2.4%.The PIPS survey covers a large sample of Spanish pension funds, most of them occupational schemes.Non-EU equities returned -1.4% over the period, while EU equities were the worst performers, with -9.4%.Alternatives, however, returned 1.7% over the first six months of 2016.Turning to the next 12 months, Bellavista said: “We expect funds to continue working on diversification, especially looking for alternatives to fixed income assets.“We don’t expect a significant change in the main asset class exposure but an increase in the underlying asset classes – for example, absolute return fixed income, private debt, convertibles and high yield.” Strong fixed income performance over last June, caused by the UK’s vote for Brexit, helped Spain’s occupational pension funds pull back their returns to -0.49% for the 12 months to the end of June, according to the country’s Investment and Pension Fund Association (INVERCO).The pension funds had made -3.33% for the 12 months to the end of March 2016, the negative returns created by market instability in the first few months of the year.However, INVERCO said the uncertainty caused by the results of the UK’s June referendum disrupted financial markets that month, with global markets in most countries, especially in Europe, experiencing sharp corrections.“The strong increase in risk aversion prompted a shift by investors towards safe haven assets,” INVERCO said.last_img read more

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Hospice NZ – Our Opinion on Euthanasia

first_imgHospice NZ April 2015With the right palliative care a person with a life limiting condition can live a good quality of life with their dignity maintained and symptoms managed.Assisted dying is a complex subject that raises challenging ethical questions for hospice care. Hospice New Zealand recognises that across society there is a range of different views, and respects the right of everyone to take an individual position. It is our view that the question of whether there should be a change in the law is one for society to consider and for the parliament to decide.The term ‘assisted dying’ is often used to describe circumstances in which a person is either helped to end their own life (physician-assisted suicide) or where there is a deliberate act to end a person’s life (euthanasia)Our viewHospice New Zealand does not support a change in the law to legalise assisted dying in any form. Nor do we consider that a change in the law would be in the best interests of the people we care for.It is important to stress that hospices’ always work strictly within the law, which currently means it is a criminal action to help someone commit suicide and may result in prosecution.We believe Government should be investing in palliative care, increasing access to care and support not legalising euthanasia. Only when all New Zealanders have ready access to expert end-of-life care can a balanced debate begin. We support that all New Zealanders have the right to choose where they die.All people with a life limiting condition should be made aware of options for hospice and palliative care, and should be offered an individual assessment of their needs to ensure that appropriate palliative care is being provided. This should be an integral part of advanced care planning.We believe that palliative care should be routinely available to all who need it, and Government should ensure that public funding is made available to increase the availability of palliative care, whether provided by the hospital, at home (by the primary health care team), in residential aged care facilities or in hospices.http://www.hospice.org.nz/about-hospice-nz/euthanasia-our-opinionlast_img read more

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SA firm scores with Virgin Atlantic deal

first_imgTDF will also be participating in the International Sales Person of the Year Awards (ISPY) later this year, with a view to winning more accolades that prove the company’s strong relationship with its concessionaires’ crew. It also holds the rights to the American Express Foreign Exchange franchise in South Africa. Concessions other than Virgin Atlantic currently under TDF management include TAAG Angola Airlines, South African Airways, Kenya Airways, South African Express, Interair and Air Mauritius. South African company Tourvest Duty Free (TDF) has had its contract to manage the in-flight duty-free sales of Virgin Atlantic Airways renewed until 2014, the second renewal since the company first won the contract in 2004. “TDF’s success in managing in-flight duty free concessions is underwritten by a philosophy based on partnership, technology, integration, innovation and world-class practices,” said Grimsley. Focus on tourism “We are looking to provide Virgin Atlantic customers with an enhanced product, offering even more choices such as a range of in-flight snacks to complement those already on offer.” 13 August 2010 TDF has won the prestigious Frontier Award for the Best In-flight Retailer of the Year five times since the company’s inception in 1999, with its latest success in the most recent adjudication last year. Award-winning services SAinfo reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material The contract covers Virgin Atlantic’s entire route network consisting of long-haul flights from the United Kingdom to North America, the Caribbean, Africa, the Middle East, Far East and Australia. “This focus on service standards and world-class processes ensure that the commercial benefits to our partners continue to be significant.” “We are extremely pleased to continue our partnership with one of the best global brands in the world. We’ve achieved many milestones together and having our commitment recognised is naturally rewarding,” TDF chief executive Selwyn Grimsley said in a statement this week. TDF forms part of the travel retail division of the Johannesburg-based Tourism Investment Corporation (Tourvest), which is involved in a wide range of tourism related activities, from designing and marketing international holiday packages, to providing in-house travel management to companies; and running stores and restaurants targeted at travellers.last_img read more

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Mandela gets new smart ID card

first_img18 July 2013 Nelson Mandela’s daughter, Zindzi Mandela, received the former president’s new smart ID card at an event to celebrate his 95th birthday at the Union Buildings in Pretoria on Thursday. Mandela remains in hospital after having been admitted on 8 June to receive treatment for a recurring lung infection. Doctors have confirmed that his health is steadily improving. Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe and Home Affairs Minister Naledi Pandor handed over the ID to Zindzi on his behalf. Speaking to SANews shortly after receiving the new ID on behalf of her father, Zindzi said she was happy that Madiba was one of the first people to get the new ID. “I’m going to give it to him and I am certain he would be very much happy,” she said, adding that the family was overwhelmed by the recognition that people are giving to Madiba. She also thanked all South Africans who are praying for Madiba. One of the recipients of the new ID, senior citizen Gogo Bethuna Moteane told SANews that she was happy with the new ID. She said she would use her ID to receive her grant. “I will keep it safe,” she said. Pandor announced the introduction of the new smart ID cards during her department’s budget vote in Parliament earlier this year. The new IDs, which will be issued free to all first-time applicants, can be used in next year’s elections. Also receiving the new IDs were the “Mandela generation” – those who were involved in the struggle against the apartheid regime during Mandela’s time. These included Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe, former President Thabo Mbeki, former Parliament Speaker Frene Ginwala, struggle stalwart Andrew Mlangeni and Sophie de Bruyn, who led the women’s march against apartheids pass laws to the Union Buildings in 1956. Senior citizens over 100 years old also received their new IDs. Former President FW de Klerk was listed as one the recipients of the new ID but could not make Thursday’s event due to ill health. The event, which included cutting a birthday cake for Madiba, was also attended by Madiba’s family representatives. As part of celebrating Madiba’s birthday, South Africans have been requested to spend 67 minutes of their time serving or helping other people. Source: SANews.gov.zalast_img read more

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Evaluating waterlogged crops

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Ohio corn and soybean fields just can’t seem to catch a break from the late spring and early summer rains. Matt Hutcheson, Product Manager with Seed Consultants says that while parts of the field may have been washed out, there is still potential out there for positive yield numbers.last_img

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a month agoArsenal hero Parlour advises Emery to make Carabao Cup aim

first_imgAbout the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say Arsenal hero Parlour advises Emery to make Carabao Cup aimby Freddie Taylora month agoSend to a friendShare the loveArsenal legend Ray Parlour thinks Unai Emery should be aiming to win the Carabao Cup.The Gunners host Nottingham Forest in the third round on Tuesday night as they start their campaign at the Emirates.”I think he mixed the team with experience and youngsters,” Parlour said of Arsenal’s run to the quarter-finals in last season’s Carabao Cup.”There is no problem with that, it is good to give the youngsters game time and they have some very good youngsters at Arsenal – Reiss Nelson, (Ainsley) Maitland-Niles, Joe Willock and Emile Smith Rowe. It is great to see players like that come into the team.”But you can also see how important the competition is to teams like Manchester City and it is another trophy to talk about at the end of the season.”It is a magnificent achievement to win any competition and for Arsenal and Unai Emery, and the rest of the top six, they should be – and probably will be – taking it seriously.”There are a lot of games and you get injuries through the season so it is a bit about balancing the squad.”He added: “The big teams have got bigger squads but it still baffles me when you get to the latter stages of any cup competition and rest players.”Arsenal fans would embrace another day out at Wembley and have a good time, as well as challenging to win the trophy – something Arsenal will be wanting to do, I’m sure.”If you ask any fan around the country and say ‘do you want a Wembley day out to go for a cup and win a trophy’ they would say ‘yes, definitely’.”I’m really surprised sometimes when teams rest players. It was the first ever trophy I won as a player and I really enjoyed it and now Emery could make it his first title in England as well.” last_img read more

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Hyundai Kia invest 300 million in Ola for EVs smart mobility solutions

first_imgNew Delhi: South Korean automobile major Hyundai Motor group Tuesday said it is investing USD 300 million in ride hailing service provider Ola, identifying India as the centre-piece in its strategy to gain leadership in global mobility market. The investment will be jointly made by group firms — Hyundai Motor Company and Kia Motors Corporation — and under a tripartite agreement with Ola, the companies will jointly develop electric vehicles ecosystem and fleet services for global markets. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalUnder the partnership, the three firms will also aim to develop electric vehicles (EVs) and charging infrastructure customised for Indian market, the companies said in joint statement. “Hyundai and Kia will invest a total of USD 300 million in Ola,” it said. This will be the biggest combined investment as on date by the two automobile companies. Commenting on the development, Hyundai Motor Group Executive Vice-Chairman Euisun Chung said, “India is the centrepiece of Hyundai Motor Group’s strategy to gain leadership in the global mobility market, and our partnership with Ola will certainly accelerate our efforts to transform into a smart mobility solutions provider. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boostHyundai Motor Group expects to accelerate its transition from a car manufacturer into a smart mobility solutions provider, as the partnership initiatives will allow it to engage in all aspects across the entire mobility value chain including vehicle production, fleet operation and mobility services, it added. Already, Hyundai has invested in car-sharing startup Revv, which had last year raised Rs 100 crore in a new funding round led by the South Korean auto major. Revv plans to plans to increase its geographical footprint to 30 cities in India within a year from 11 cities. Starting from this month, Hyundai Motor India has launched a pilot project offering customers to experience its products through a subscription model in partnership with Revv. The initiative will cover six cities — Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, Kolkata, Pune, Bengaluru and Hyderabad. As part of the investment in Ola, the group said the companies have agreed to co-create solutions to operate and manage fleet vehicles, marking the Hyundai’s first foray into the industry, as they expand operations from automobile manufacturing and sales to total fleet solutions. Ola Co-founder and CEO Bhavish Aggarwal said the partners will bring to market a new generation of mobility solutions, and constantly expand their range of offerings for consumers. “This partnership will also significantly benefit driver-partners on our platform, as we collaborate with Hyundai to build vehicles and solutions that enable sustainable earnings for millions of them, in the time to come,” he added. Hyundai, Kia and Ola have also agreed to coordinate efforts to develop cars and specifications that reflect the needs of the ride hailing market (both users and drivers), the statement said. The partnership will also look at supporting micro-entrepreneurship opportunities by providing access to customised Hyundai and Kia vehicles as well as financing and insurance benefits for driver-partners. Under the agreement, the three companies will also extensively collaborate on developing unique fleet and mobility solutions, building India-specific electric vehicles and infrastructure, the statement said. Besides, it will also offer aspiring driver partners customised vehicles on the Ola platform, it added. The partnership will offer Ola drivers various financial services, including lease and instalment payments, while vehicle maintenance and repair services are expected to enhance customer satisfaction, it added.last_img read more

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2015 Really Was The Bizarro Peyton Manning Season

Terry Bradshaw48788643616282 Donovan McNabb45677285457972 Jim Kelly76647947656456 Roger Staubach79707983407375 Dan Fouts81697160875530 After breaking down the characteristics of Manning and his teams over the years, it’s amazing to see how sharply the usual tendencies were inverted along Denver’s path to the championship. On average, Manning’s teams were middle-of-the-pack on defense, and a shade better than that at running the ball. That was more than enough to rattle off an absurd string of 10-plus-win seasons, because Manning was very good — if not completely and totally great — in every facet of passing the football. His average defense was worse than that supporting Brett Favre, Joe Montana or Steve Young, and the running game was less efficient than what Tom Brady, Drew Brees or John Elway was working with.Manning did have a lot more help than Dan Marino, but he also bested him across every passing category — like a more accurate, deeper-throwing version of the Dolphins great, who got the ball out just as fast but was more careful with it. And since we’re looking at percentiles instead of raw output, the differences between eras soften, though they don’t completely disappear.That was prime Peyton, however. This year’s version was far, far worse, particularly in categories where he once excelled. To wit: His rates of completions, touchdowns and interceptions, each typically among the top 30 percent of regular QBs, all dipped into the bottom quarter of passers this season. Meanwhile, his defensive support, usually in the middle of the pack, zoomed up to the best in football. Peyton Manning91648870956052 Sources: pro football reference, football outsiders Tony Romo80778259606954 Joe Namath42886839924930 Kurt Warner93828944676061 From a lot of angles, Peyton Manning is the greatest quarterback of all time. His second Super Bowl win, however, came in decidedly un-Peyton-like fashion, with Manning riding in the wake of an all-time defense while doddering well below replacement level for most of the season. Perhaps this is karma, a just reward after a career of — with a few exceptions — being shackled to some of the worst defenses ever to run deep into the playoffs. It’s the popular line of thinking, at least, and popular enough to dig a little deeper. So: Just how bad were Peyton’s defenses in his best years?Here’s a look at the statistical profiles of Hall of Fame and near-Hall of Fame QBs from the modern era — this includes the defensive and rushing support each received throughout his career, but especially his prime. To find this, I took each passer’s performance in a few categories — completion percentage, yards per completion, touchdown percentage, interception percentage, sack percentage — and sorted them by their percentile relative to the league in any given season. I then weighted each season to give more weight to a player’s best years according to value over replacement (like I did with Ken Griffey Jr. here). Then, I did the same for Defense-adjusted Value Over Average for both rushing offense and defense. It’s been a stunning reversal, the likes of which we haven’t really seen from such a good QB before; the only possible exceptions were the final full seasons of Marino, Ken Stabler and Joe Theismann’s careers. Those performances all came in the service of mediocre teams, though. Somehow Manning actually turned an even more extreme version of this formula into a championship.We aren’t sure if the Super Bowl was Manning’s final game, and it’s hard to speculate about how this changes Manning’s legacy (not that a paltry two titles will ever satiate the “Count The Ringz!!!” crowd anyway). But even if Manning happened to be dragged to a championship in the final throes of his senescence by Von Miller and Denver’s ferocious defense, it’s hard not to appreciate the strange symmetry after Manning spent a career elevating middling and worse teams with his brilliance. Troy Aikman88384677788056 Ben Roethlisberger81797157355968 John Elway59646367637649 Philip Rivers82738167644333 Brett Favre78558257704763 Dan Marino74577866945030 PERCENTILE VS. LEAGUEDVOA FROM… QUARTERBACKCMP%YD/CMPTD%INT%SK%RUSHING OFFENSEDEFENSE Ken Anderson83526784486945 Joe Montana93327484717369 Drew Brees90528267887031 Carson Palmer69597551775547 Aaron Rodgers82799388367759 Bob Griese86558756458750 Tom Brady77688485787852 Steve Young98719078428267 Warren Moon74537159705259 read more

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Coutinho flourishing in Neymars shadow Roberto Carlos says

first_imgRoberto Carlos recently admitted Philippe Coutinho is blooming, even though he is still under Neymar’s shadow, and might prove a key player for Brazil in the World Cup.Despite the fact that the Barcelona star scored twice in Brazil’s three games in Russia and Neymar did so only once, Neymar is still under the spotlight of the global media.Roberto Carlos, who won the World Cup in 2002, thinks if that continues, Coutinho can easily keep up the good work and even step out of the shadow.“Philippe is in a very good moment, in Barcelona and in the Brazilian team,” Carlos said, according to Sportskeeda.Neymar responds to PSG criticism with a stunning winner Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – September 14, 2019 Despite all the backlash he got today at Parc des Princes, Neymar responded by scoring a stunning winner vs Strasbourg.We all knew that Neymar’s…“He’s a very important player for Brazil, because the pressure is all on Neymar, then Coutinho shows up. The Brazilian team have a very strong chance to win this World Cup.”“Neymar is gettting better. He’s relaxed. He’s recovered well from his injury. He’s a very important player for Brazil. He is very calm, that is the most important thing. When he is calm I know that he can offer much more.”He also went on to advise the Brazilians to not underestimate Mexico and there is no easy games from the upcoming ones as well.last_img read more

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United must build on Cardiff victory – Young

first_imgManchester United winger Ashley Young has urged his teammates to build on their 5-1 win at Cardiff City as they prepare to host Huddersfield Town on Wednesday.Young wore the captain’s armband during United’s 5-1 victory at Cardiff City Stadium on Saturday.Marcus Rashford, Ander Herrera, Anthony Martial and a brace from Jesse Lingard gave Ole Gunnar Solskjaer his first win in his first game as caretaker boss.United will host Huddersfield Town on boxing day, and Young has demanded the same level of performance on Wednesday.“We are delighted [with the win],“ Young told the club’s website.“The way we went about our job from minute one to the 90th-minute was fantastic and the only disappointment was conceding the goal, but we take the positives from today’s game and build on from here.Harry Maguire, Manchester UnitedLiverpool legend Nicol slams Harry Maguire’s Man United form Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Steve Nicol believes Harry Maguire has made some “horrendous mistakes” recently, and has failed to find his best form since joining Manchester United.“The fans have been fantastic all season whether we have won, lost or drawn, they have always been behind us.“There are always going to be times when they are not going to be happy when we are not winning, that’s obvious. Today they were brilliant from the warm-ups to when we left the pitch.“We want to keep those performances up for them, the staff, the players and keep building on what we showed.“We have lots of games coming up over the Christmas period and it is about recovering in the right way and we just have to concentrate on each game coming up and not look too far ahead.“The next game is against Huddersfield, a lot of the press will talk about us, but as players we concentrate on the next game and that is what we will be doing. We have another tough few games coming up and Huddersfield is our focus.”last_img read more

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