Italy’s Fondo Pensione Nazionale BCC CRA, the pension scheme for the employees of cooperative banks, has moved a mandate handled by Credit Suisse Asset Management to Pictet Asset Management and Fidelity International.

According to the fund’s latest annual report, the board of directors decided to cease the relationship with Credit Suisse, which managed an European active mandate, following “appropriate in-depth analysis”, transferring the portfolio to Fidelity and Pictet, in addition to allocating a portion of such mandate to direct investments.

The scheme handed out mandates for European active asset management to Credit Suisse, Fidelity, Pictet and Vontobel Asset Management, for a total amount of €423m, equal to approximately 15% of the scheme’s total assets, it said.

Credit Suisse’s portfolio was worth €179m at the end of 2023, according to the report.

Asset managers hired by BCC CRA are responsible for managing €1.69bn, out of total assets of €2.92bn, through passive or active mandates, with geographical diversification across euro and ex-euro areas, it added.

Last year, BCC CRA designed a new type of portfolio to manage assets through “specialist and balanced world mandates”, it said.

The scheme believes it will benefit from the new specialist mandates in the different phases of the economic cycle, from a global exposure to markets, and from the opportunities offered by a specialised approach on individual asset classes resulting in a more efficient process, both in terms of costs and operationality, it said.

The board of directors also decided to extend the contract with existing asset managers Azimut Investments, Abrdn, Groupama Asset Management, Lazard Asset Management, Pictet, Amundi, and AXA, technically aligning the expiry dates of their contracts with those of other asset managers (Vontobel, Fidelity, and Eurizon Capital).

The moves was made with a view to structuring one single public tender for the management of the fund’s assets, and to support its strategic asset allocation project.

BCC CRA reviewed its strategic asset allocation last year for two of its sub-funds – ‘Raccolta’ and ‘Crescita’.

The new strategic asset allocation for the sub-fund ‘Raccolta’, open to risk-adverse members, foresees a reduction in liquidity and inflation-linked assets, a marginal reduction of European investment grade corporate bonds, European equities, and absolute return investments, with an increase in euro and ex-euro government bonds, according to the statement.

The new strategy for ‘Crescita’, the sub-fund for members open to a moderate exposure to risk, sees an increasing exposure to euro and ex-euro government bonds, cutting exposure to inflation-linked assets, corporate bonds, absolute return Investments, and emerging market equities, with a slight increase in European equities.

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