NETHERLANDS - Pensioenfonds Grafische Bedrijven (PGB), the €9bn Dutch pension fund for the printing and publishing industry, has hit out against the planned introduction of an indexation label, arguing it promotes short-termism and is not informative enough.

In an update on its funding level, the pension fund said the label is too much a "snapshot", and Paul van Leeuwen, managing director of the pension fund, commented: "Because of the fluctuations in the funding levels of the pension fund, the picture can be different from year to year."

PGB believes the the information is therefore limited, and officials argue the picture will show for virtually all the pension funds that pensions lag strongly behind consumer pricing development.

A PGB spokesman clarified to IPE: "It does not matter if you make the analysis on the basis of, for instance, a cover ratio of 140% or 150%, or, as is the case now, of between 85% and 100%. Like this, the label becomes too much of a snapshot. The informative value of the label is therefore limited," he added.

Hans Hoogervorst, chairman of the communications watchdog and financial markets authority AFM, announced in November last year pension providers would be given a three-month respite from the introduction of the indexation label - as part of the UPO - which was initially set at 1 January 2009.

A delay of the label should allow providers to base their first official ‘label' communication on actual continuity analysis and the cover ratio achieved by the end of this year, Hoogervorst explained at the time.

However, Van Leeuwen suggested the pension representative bodies are now lobbying for a further delay of the label's introduction.

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