Analysis and opinion – Page 2

  • Lynda Whitney
    Features

    Accounting Matters: Accounting for the Wedge

    December 2020 (Magazine)

    The reason why defined benefit (DB) scheme sponsors account for inflation is because International Accounting Standard 19, Employee Benefits, tells them that if they make a benefit promise that is linked to price increases, the effect of that commitment has to be accounted for. The starting point for what by any standards is a gargantuan actuarial task is to look at yields on inflation-linked bonds. 

  • Joe Biden
    Features

    Biden signal is green for ESG

    December 2020 (Magazine)

    For many, US president-elect Joe Biden spells hope. From an ESG-perspective, there are two main aspects to this phenomenon.

  • Liam Kennnedy
    Opinion Pieces

    The looming trust deficit

    November 2020 (Magazine)

    Once again, European pension systems – notably those of the Netherlands and Denmark – have scored most highly in this year’s Mercer CFA Pension Index. These successes are no accident, and among the key ingredients is years of pragmatic and consensual policy making. 

  • Daniel Ben-Ami
    Opinion Pieces

    COVID is not everything

    November 2020 (Magazine)

    For understandable reasons it has become commonplace to talk about the immense damage done by COVID-19. This probably makes sense as a kind of shorthand. However, careful reflection on the painful experience of recent months should show it is a one-sided way of understanding the pandemic’s devastating impact.

  • Carlo Svaluto Moreolo
    Opinion Pieces

    Talking to strangers

    November 2020 (Magazine)

    In his recent book, Malcolm Gladwell discusses how people’s natural lack of ability to detect lies can lead to unpleasant consequences. 

  • venilia amorim
    Opinion Pieces

    Can superfunds be the silver bullet for DB woes?

    November 2020 (Magazine)

    Consolidation as a means of achieving better outcomes for pension schemes is a growing trend. This was highlighted in the UK’s Department for Work and Pensions’ (DWP) 2018 White Paper on protecting defined benefit (DB) pension schemes.

  • Joseph Mariathasan
    Features

    Smart phones: the key to African opportunity

    November 2020 (Magazine)

    Demographics are often the least appreciated of the long-term trends that investors consider, despite being perhaps the most important. 

  • Cllr Doug McMurdo
    Features

    Accounting Matters: Who sets the standards?

    November 2020 (Magazine)

    You are what you know, the saying goes. And it goes without saying that the 211 comment letters the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) received on its Primary Financial Statements (PFS) project will represent some diverse viewpoints. 

  • Liam Kennnedy
    Opinion Pieces

    Nasty problems can be overcome

    October (2020) Magazine

    The Nobel laureate Bill Sharpe once called defined contribution (DC) decumulation the “nastiest, hardest problem in finance”. 

  • Daniel Ben-Ami
    Opinion Pieces

    Mind the reality gap

    October (2020) Magazine

    The past few months have brought huge discrepancies between the financial markets and the economy.

  • Carlo Svaluto Moreolo
    Opinion Pieces

    Pension funds should reflect on their true purpose

    October (2020) Magazine

    With COVID-19 infection rates rising across Europe it seems clear that lockdowns are not over yet. Europe will suffer economically as well as socially and politically. 

  • Venilia
    Opinion Pieces

    No need to panic

    October (2020) Magazine

    The global economic discussion has focused on assessing what damage COVID-19-related lockdowns have caused, and more recently on questioning the speed and strength of the recovery.

  • Joseph Mariathasan
    Features

    Sharing Economy: Think impact, build a legacy

    October (2020) Magazine

    As the world adjusts to COVID-19, amid the uncertainties and dangers that lie ahead, there should still be time to dream of a better world. 

  • Charles Cowling
    Features

    Accounting Matters - UK DB pension schemes: One step forward, two steps back

    October (2020) Magazine

    As sometimes happens with Easter, one of the surveys of the UK pensions accounting landscape from consultants Lane Clark & Peacock (LCP) was later than usual. And, like an Easter egg, this keenly awaited overview of the net funding position of FTSE 100 defined benefit (DB) pension schemes comes in two halves. 

  • Daniel
    Opinion Pieces

    Making a difference

    September 2020 (Magazine)

    This time is different”. Such claims were rightly skewered in a well-known book by Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff. But with the benefit of recent experience it should be clear that their argument did not go far enough.

  • Liam Kennnedy
    Opinion Pieces

    A long sunset on a fragile model

    September 2020 (Magazine)

    The ECB’s move in September 2019 to lower rates and restart corporate bond purchases was a clear red warning signal to defined benefit pension funds and other liability-driven investors.

  • Carlo Svaluto Moreolo
    Opinion Pieces

    The post-pandemic economy could be more of the same

    September 2020 (Magazine)

    There seems to be a consensus that COVID-19 will bring momentous change to the global economic order. Commentators point to several developments to support this idea.

  • Venilia
    Opinion Pieces

    Take from the young to give to the old

    September 2020 (Magazine)

    For many years, the Dutch pension system was considered one of the world’s best – it was top in class with Denmark in the Melbourne Mercer Global Pension Index annual study last year.

  • Joseph Mariathasan
    Analysis

    Ecology: A car crash in nature

    September 2020 (Magazine)

    Vian Sharif, head of sustainability at FNZ Group, never imagined her recently completed PhD thesis would have implications for global health. The subject was the trade in endangered animal products such as the scales of pangolins. 

  • Features

    Accounting matters: Totalling the sub-totals

    September 2020 (Magazine)

    A project that at its simplest is about the layout of financial statements should be uncontroversial. But the International Accounting Standards Board’s Primary Financial Statements project faces a potentially big test.