The French government’s pension plan Fonds de réserve pour les retraites (FRR) has selected Russell Investments and AXA Investment Managers Paris to manage several overlay strategies.

The appointments follow a restricted request for proposals that was launched 23 September in order to select one or two overlay asset managers.

According to FRR, the contracts are intended to ensure the passive management of exposure to currency risks, to implement the asset classes exposures decided by the fund’s executive board, to hedge part of the FRR portfolio with options, and finally to invest the necessary liquidity for these three missions.

Each of the mandates will run for four years with the possibility of being renewed only one time for a further one year, the fund added.

Russell Investments said the fund will use its specialist expertise to gain greater portfolio control and manage its risk exposure through the use of currency hedging, tactical options hedging and liquidity management strategies.

“We appreciate the trust the FRR places in Russell Investments to deliver efficient and flexible overlay strategies” said Richard Webb, head of implementation, EMEA, at Russell.

“Our team of experienced investment professionals looks forward to working with the FRR and leveraging our innovative solutions to control its investment exposures, manage its risks and reduce costs,” he added.

AXA did not provide a comment by press time.

Italian pension fund awards bonds mandates

The  Fondo Pensioni della Regione Siciliana – the pension scheme for teh Sicilian region – has awarded Amundi Sgr and Eurizon Capital Sgr with euro bonds mandates.

The tender was initially issued 16 November via the Official Journal of the European Union for an initial €150m to be equally split between both managers. The fund may increase the mandate value up to a maximum €200m, it said.

The mandates will “ensure diversification between management styles”, a statement added. Both mandates have a duration of eight years.

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