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ING names first ever global pensions chief

NETHERLANDS – Dutch bank ING has put its global pensions business under the wing of one of its most senior executives.

ING has put the business under executive board member Fred Hubbell. This is the first time that pensions has had board level oversight on a global basis, ING said.

Hubbell is the head of ING’s American operation. He joined ING in 1997 when it bought US life insurer Equitable of Iowa. Under a revamp announced today, he will also assume a global co-ordinating role for ING Investment Management. He will also take over the chairmanship of ING's insurance business from ING’s group chairman Ewald Kist.

ING spokesman Peter Jong said: “We think this a very interesting business.” Hubbell’s taking over pensions responsibility is both a way of managing the business as well as signalling a “push” into pensions by the bank, Jong said.

ING recently launched the Non-State Pension Fund ING in Russia – providing defined contribution schemes to corporate clients with individual employee pension accounts.

Separately, in its annual report released today ING said that it made a 1.44 billion euro pension contribution in 2002. “This includes a payment of 662 million in connection with the transfer of liabilities related to the early retirement scheme in the Netherlands,” it said.

It added that the return on its pension plan assets was a negative 718 million euros, compared to a loss of 373 million in 2001 and a 346 million surplus in 2000.

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