HSBC Actuaries wins National Counties brief

UK - HSBC Actuaries and Consultants Ltd., says it has been appointed as investment consultants to the National Counties Building Society Pension and Life Assurance Scheme - initially to review investment strategy.

Scheme administrator Tony Gration said: "This is the first time we have appointed a specialist investment consultant and the trustees were unanimous in their choice. HACL showed a clear understanding of the issues the trustees are facing and of the objectives that had been set."

The HSBC consulting arm said it was chosen in preference to three other firms

Earlier this week HSBC said it would become the first UK bank to offer trustees a pension fund that meets the requirements of Shariah, or Islamic, law.

The HSBC Life Amanah Pension Fund is "designed so that it doesn't hold shares, for example, in companies primarily involved in alcohol production or distribution, gambling, pornography, pork products, tobacco and conventional financial services".

HSBC said the fund tracks an index that includes the top 100 companies that are engaged in Shariah-compliant activities.

"With the recent anti-discrimination legislation, trustees need to consider whether they are giving Muslim employees and members access to a Shariah-compliant pension fund," said Julian Lyne, head of institutional pooled funds at HSBC Asset Management in the UK.

"We believe that HSBC's new fund offers trustees and members an excellent opportunity to gain exposure to global equities yet still comply with Shariah."

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