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Dutch pension funds now hold more than €675bn in assets

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NETHERLANDS - The combined assets of Dutch pension funds have grown from €649bn at year-end 2009 to €675bn during the third quarter, with €300bn allocated to fixed income and €216bn invested in equity, according to financial supervisor De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB).

More than 50% of fixed income has been invested in government bonds in the euro area, while the owned non-euro bonds were mainly issued by financial institutions (€48bn) and companies (€30bn).

According to the regulator, 80% of pension funds' equity investments are outside the euro-zone, with €118bn invested in companies and €52bn in financial institutions. Equity investments in the euro-zone came to more than €45bn.

The DNB noted that Dutch pension funds have re-structured their investment policies over the last 18 months by placing a large part of their assets in funds for joint account (FJAs) against participations certificates.

The €231bn civil service scheme ABP and the €98bn healthcare scheme PFZW have now placed all their assets in FJAs through their respective asset managers, APG and PGGM.

The DNB also said assets invested in foreign funds remained stable at €100bn, half of which has been placed in UK and US funds.

Dutch pension schemes' participation in investments funds in the euro-zone has also increased gradually to €33bn, according to the DND.

Compared with the end of 2009, combined fixed income investments have risen by more than 2 percentage points to 44%, while equity holdings increased by 1 percentage point to 32% in total.

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