French public sector pension scheme Ircantec has awarded five mandates worth a combined €2.8bn for global and European equities.

The €11bn scheme has split a €2.4bn actively managed European equities allocation between Mirova, CPR Asset Management, Candriam and Allianz Global Investors.

BNP Paribas Asset Management has been assigned to manage a separate €400m factor investing mandate focused on OECD countries outside Europe.

In each case, the investments will be held in segregated mandates, according to a contract award notice published last week.

A spokeswoman for Candriam said its slice of the mandate would be managed according to its “European equity innovation” process with a socially responsible investment “filter”.

Metzler wins €1bn currency overlay mandate

A German pension fund has awarded a €1bn currency overlay mandate to Metzler Currency Management.

According to a statement from Metzler, the Protestant Pension Fund outsourced the mandate to Metzler’s currency team in March.

Protestant church in Marburg, Germany

Credit: Adam Jones

A protestant church in Marburg, Germany

Özgür Atasever, head of currency management at Metzler Capital Markets, said: “More and more clients are asking for systematic foreign exchange (FX) management because regulatory transparency requirements have become stricter and FX risks have grown significantly.

“Our systematic hedging strategy allows efficient and cost-effective management of FX risks without sacrificing the opportunity to participate in positive price performance.”

The pension fund is a member of Germany’s Community of Municipal and Church Retirement Pensions.

Metzler Asset Management has €75.7bn in assets under management, according to IPE’s 2018 Top 400 Asset Managers survey.

Italian teachers’ fund shakes up manager line-up

Fondo Espero, the €1.1bn Italian pension scheme for education staff, has appointed Groupama to run euro-denominated bonds and money market funds.

According to Espero’s website, European fixed income accounts for 20% of its strategic asset allocation in its €896m growth section, while money market funds account for 10%.

The pension scheme has also hired Unipol to runs its €202m guaranteed section, which is predominantly invested in short-term fixed income instruments.

In March, Espero hired Vontobel to run global bonds – which have a 20% target allocation in the growth section – and Epsilon to run a mandate to manage “tail risk”, worth 1% of the investment portfolio. The two managers replaced PIMCO.

Hampshire Pension Fund names JP Morgan to private debt mandate

Winchester Cathedral

Winchester Cathedral in Hampshire

The £6.6bn (€7.6bn) pension fund for the county of Hampshire in England has hired JP Morgan Alternatives Asset Management to run a private debt portfolio.

A spokeswoman for Hampshire Council said the pension fund had made a 5% strategic allocation to private debt.

According to a contract notice issued last week, the Hampshire Pension Fund has appointed JP Morgan for an initial five years, with the option to extend “for an indefinite period as needed”, dependent on performance.

The contract notice stated that Hampshire wanted the manager to “deliver high-quality risk-adjusted returns” through a bespoke fund-of-funds strategy.

This article was updated on 14 May 2019 to add further details of the Hampshire Pension Fund mandate.