EUROPE – Goldman Sachs Asset Management says it sees demand for mandates that take account of liabilities.

“Increasingly pension fund trustees and consultants are looking to fund managers to provide asset liability solutions and we therefore envisage demand for mandates with liability-based benchmarks,” the asset manager said in a statement.

Earlier this month Standard Life Investments announced that it has developed a set of “liability-driven” investment solutions.

“In 2004 we believe pension funds and investors will have demand for strategies that can provide additional alpha with low correlation, cost efficiency and little capital outlay,” said Suzanne Donohoe, co-head of GSAM, Europe.

“This may include overlay mandates, such as currency and asset allocation, which have low correlation with other asset classes, as well as unconstrained mandates in both equities and bonds.”

Goldman added that it won a total of 53 mandates in Europe in 2003. It said that seven publicly-announced institutional and sub advisory mandates during the year to the end of November amounted to 1.86 billion pounds.

The year also saw the 10 billion-pound British Coal Staff Superannuation Scheme withdraw 4.8 billion pounds from the firm, although it remains a "favoured manager". And it was among the 10 managers that have lost out as the Belgian state has taken over the Belgacom pension fund.

In December GSAM’s parent company Goldman Sachs said its total revenues from asset management rose 33% to 513 million dollars in the fourth quarter.