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Nordic roundup: Danish parliament approves LD as holiday fund manager

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Danish politicians have signed off on legislation covering holiday pay adjustments, which is set to add DKK80bn (€10.7bn) to Lønmodtagernes Dyrtidsfond (LD).

Political parties representing a large majority of the Danish parliament have agreed to the changes to holiday entitlement rules for Danish employees. The huge new investment fund will managed by LD and administered by ATP.

The law is being changed to bring Danish rules on holiday rights in line with EU law, and will effectively give existing employees add an extra 12 months’ worth of holiday entitlement, paid for on retirement by the new LD fund.

Troels Lund Poulsen, minister for employment, said: “All people who work sometimes need to recharge their batteries and have a holiday.

“So I am very pleased that it has been possible to achieve a broad political agreement, which ensures that new employees now also have a paid holiday.”

LD said that when the fund is established, around DKK1.3bn will be transferred from various existing holiday pay funds.

However, since the precise amount to be transferred by the employers is unknown, LD said it does not know exactly how much money it will have to invest.

Dorrit Vanglo, chief executive of LD, said: “It is a challenge, but one of the good ones, which we are happy to take on.”

Sampension gains 5.3% but plays down return expectations

Meanwhile, labour market pension fund Sampension has warned that the global upturn for equity markets is nearing its end-phase, as it reported a 5.3% investment return for the first nine months of the year for customers with market-rate pension plans.

Hasse Jørgensen, chief executive of Sampension, said: “Growth in the global economy has boosted equity prices to a very high level. Prices for all asset types have become high, and we will prepare ourselves for the fact that the global upturn is approaching its end-phase.”

Sampension said foreign and Danish shares had led its investment returns in the period.

Emerging markets equities generated the highest return at 23% in the nine-month period, followed by Danish shares which produced a 20% return, the pension fund said.

Swedish insurers oppose EIOPA data plans

The Swedish insurance industry association Svensk Försäkring has added its voice to those criticising planned new reporting requirements from the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA).

Aimed at primarily at occupational pension schemes, EIOPA’s plans to streamline reporting requirements were too far-reaching, the association said.

The industry body also said the date for the new rules to come into force had been poorly chosen.

Under the proposal, the first report under the new system would have to be submitted in 2018, the year before the implementation of the IORP II directive.

Karin Chenon, economist at Svensk Försäkring, said: “Retirement institutions and regulatory authorities need to have enough time to adapt systems and routines to changing reporting requirements.”

In order to avoid introducing two sets of new rules in a short period of time, she said the association proposed EIOPA postpone the date at which its new requirements would come into force.

EIOPA has already been criticised by the UK’s Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association, the Europe-wide trade body PensionsEurope, and German pension groups for the potential burden its reporting proposals would place on schemes.

The association also said it was “remarkable” that information about individual institutions should be submitted directly to EIOPA.

“EIOPA has no supervisory responsibility for individual institutions,” Chenon said. “We are therefore particularly opposed to the proposal that company-specific data from individual occupational retirement institutions over a certain size should be submitted to EIOPA.”

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