European pension assets increased to €5.5trn last year, up by almost €300bn, according to IPE’s Top 1000 Pension Funds survey.

Data compiled by S&P Capital IQ found that a 5.5% increase recorded in European assets under management lagged behind the global increase in assets for institutional investors.

Over the course of 2013, assets among the Top 100 global institutional investors increased by €1.64trn to €21.14trn, up by 8.4% year on year.

The survey – a composite of data collected by the European Central Bank, the European Insurance and Occupational markets Authority, industry body PensionsEurope and the OECD – also listed the largest institutional investors in individual European countries.

It found that the Norwegian Government Pension Fund Global – the largest European asset owner, with NOK5.5trn (€556bn) at the end of June – accounted for 11% of assets held by the 1,000 largest pension funds.

Dutch civil service scheme ABP, with €309bn in assets at the end of March, came a distant second with 6% of assets, followed by Dutch healthcare scheme PFZW with 3%.

Denmark’s ATP came fourth with around 2% of assets, followed by Sweden’s Alecta in fifth.

According to Michael Yusko, senior director at Standard & Poor’s (S&P) Capital IQ, the tables provides a “snapshot” of an industry that is “dynamic and […] perpetually changing”.

Fennell Betson, founding editor at IPE, said the Top 1000 survey was unique in that it attempted to “estimate the wider ‘occupational pensions sector’ by collecting data for book reserve and life and pension insurers”.

He added: “The IPE study, based on figures compiled by S&P’s Capital IQ Money Market Directories, covers just 1,000 funds – albeit the largest in Europe.

“There are thousands of funds not included. Therefore, the real total figure for Europe’s pensions assets may be as elusive as ever.”

To order a copy of the IPE Top 1000 Pension Funds or request the data in a digital or Excel format, contact Emma Morgan-Jones at