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Dutch schemes ‘opting for top asset managers’

NETHERLANDS – Dutch pension schemes are increasingly concentrating their assets with the leading asset managers in their field, a new report claims.

Consulting firm Bureau Bosch noted that asset managers that lost significant portions of their assets in 2003 have seen a strong decline in number of mandates. It said: “Compared to previous years, the rise and fall of assets under management was sharper.

“This could also be due to the fact that the pension schemes are, now more than ever, investing their assets with only a few asset managers that represent the pinnacle of the business.”

Bosch found that Barclays Global Investors has the most Dutch institutional assets under management – 35 billion euros, or 11% of the 316 billion-euro market. State Street Global Advisors is second at 26.5 billion.

“Foreign managers dominate the top two, Dutch managers dominate the top 15, foreign managers dominate the rest,” Bosch’s Dutch Investment Management Survey 2005 states.

Bosch added it is questionable whether the former Philips pension manager Schootse Poort, now renamed Philips Pensions Competence Center, should be called a commercial asset manager, considering that it is no longer actively acquiring new customers.

Bosch noted a gradual shift towards enhanced indexing and “somewhat more active risk towards the benchmark”.

It said: “The increase of the assets under management of these managers supports the claim that indexing is still attracting a lot of attention of Dutch pension schemes.”

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