Finland’s Keva saw investments return 4.8% in 2015, boosted by strong results in private equity and real estate.
The €44.2bn local authority pension provider, which said financial markets resembled a roller coaster last year as it explained why the annual result was down from 8.7%, has also appointed Timo Kietäväistä managing director following the sudden resignation of Jukka Männistö last October.
The fund said private equity was the strongest performer, returning 19.2%, followed by an 8.7% return from quoted equity and its equity fund holdings.
Property, comprising both its direct holdings and its real estate funds, returned 8%, well ahead of the 0.4% return offered by fixed income, which accounted for 44% of portfolio.
Keva’s hedge fund and commodity holdings were the only investments to suffer a loss, returning a combined -1.3%, during what Tapani Hellstén said was a year “full of concerns about the global economic outlook”.
“Markets were very restless, even more so than in recent years,” he added.
He said that 2016 was already predicted to be an uncertain year, and that it remained to be seen if recent market activity was a short-term correction or the first step in a longer-term trend.
Hellstén will step aside as acting managing director in mid-February, when Kietäväistä, currently deputy head of the Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities, will take over.
Kietäväistä will be the fifth person to lead Keva since 2013 following the resignation Merja Aljus due to questions over her expenses.
Pekka Alanen, deputy chief executive at the time, ran the organisation until Männistö’s arrival in mid-2014, who left in October 2015 following a “crisis of confidence” with the board.