UK - Large UK pension schemes, with funds over £1bn (€1.3bn) in assets, are increasingly becoming involved in class action law cases, the National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) has found.

The pension fund involvement in class action settlements as a lead plaintiff or active participant has gone up from 10% over the whole of last year to 23% in 2008 so far.

The number of pension funds to collect on a settlement has gone up as well from 69% last year to 73%.

The NAPF added the overall number of funds who have never taken part in class action settlements has decreased by 13% to 15% of funds.

David Paterson, NAPF head of corporate governance, commented on the development today, saying: "The rise in the participation of pension funds in class actions shows that they have become more effective in monitoring their entitlement to settlements and in holding their agents to account."

He concluded: "In the current economic climate we expect the trend of increasing shareholder litigation to continue."

The results are part of the NAPF's Shareholder Engagement Survey in which it surveyed pension funds with more than £1bn under management and received responses from 53 pension funds with combined asset holdings exceeding £300bn.

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