Provisum, the €1.4bn pension fund for retail company C&A, has said its sizeable hedge-fund allocation accounted for more than 1.5 percentage points of its 6.3% overall return for 2015. According to its annual report, Provisum’s 14.8% hedge-fund allocation returned 15.3% over the period, outperforming its benchmark by 5.6 percentage points.The scheme, one of the few in the Netherlands to enjoy a strong funding position, attributed the result largely to the appreciation of the US dollar against the euro.It also cited the impact of its hedged-equity, event-driven and relative-value strategies, and particularly to its “exposure to Asia and volatility”. Provisum, which outsources asset management to Anthos Fund and Asset Management, said its real estate holdings returned 11.5%, with indirect real estate delivering more than 20%.It cited a revaluation of non-listed property investments, with the CBRE Retail Fund Belgium and France returning 42.3%.The pension fund’s 15% bond allocation, which returned 1.3%, outperformed its benchmark by 0.9 percentage points, due in part to positions in Spanish, Italian and Belgian government paper.The allocation produced an overall net return of 3.2%, after a 3-percentage-point loss caused by the appreciation of the US dollar against the euro.Provisum hedged 75% of the downward risk of the dollar, as well as the UK pound and the Japanese yen.C&A’s scheme strategically covered 50% of the interest on its liabilities through long-term German and Dutch government bonds, with a bandwidth of 40-60% for tactical adjustments.A relatively high coverage ratio of 124.6% at year-end enabled the pension fund to grant all of its participants a full indexation of 0.66%.The pension fund reported administration costs of €219 per participant and said it spent 0.87% and 0.03% on asset management and transactions, respectively.Provisum has 9,450 participants in total, of whom 3,385 are workers and 2,620 pensioners.
Herald Sun 1 June 2012Two men have been declared the parents of a baby that was born through a surrogate, with a court ruling it was in the child’s “best interests”. In transferring the child’s parentage to the two men, a Supreme Court judge was satisfied the pregnancy was not from an illegal commercial agreement and that the woman who carried the baby was not paid to do so. Altruistic surrogacy, where a woman isn’t paid for the pregnancy except for medical expenses, is rare but permitted in Victoria, NSW and Queensland. But it’s believed that only one in 20 couples who want to use a surrogate can stay in Australia, with most forced to have their baby born through a foreign surrogate. The NSW child, born in April 2010, now has the two Sydney men as parents. The birth mother agrees not to be recognised on the birth certificate.http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/more-news/court-finds-two-men-parents/story-fn7x8me2-1226377875137