EUROPE - KAS Bank says it is well positioned for the burgeoning European asset pooling and pensions market.

The securities services bank - reporting a 31% increase in first-half pre-tax profits - said: "The Dutch and European regulations in the field of pensions are changing the playing field at a quick rate.

"KAS Bank is adequately anticipating the needs of an increasing number of pension funds and insurers to largely or completely outsource their investment services. As a result of this development, KAS Bank is also employing clients' staff for the transfer of these services."

It added: "The attention on asset pooling, whereby the assets of various (international) entities can be pooled, is spreading."

It said it welcomes the new Dutch regulations (the Fund for Joint Account) and supports stimulating "a strong position of the Netherlands within an upcoming European pension market".   

First-half profit was €20.2m compared to €9m a year before.

Custody and investment management services income increased by €1.9m to €15.5m.

It said: "This increase was the result of both the increase of activities amongst existing and new clients, and of exchange rate increases on the securities exchanges. The margin on the custody services increased slightly.