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Pensions Trust hands iBoxx brief to Standard Life

UK - Standard Life Investments says it has been awarded a 75 million-pound (107.4 million-euro) corporate bond brief by the Pensions Trust, benchmarked against the iBoxx index.

The firm said it has been selected by the trust, a provider of occupational schemes for charities, to manage the segregated sterling corporate bond portfolio.

It said the appointment followed an evaluation process involving a number of investment houses and is on a wholly discretionary basis.

"We have been successful in winning both pooled and segregated bond business, but, significantly, this represents our first segregated sterling corporate bond mandate run against the iBoxx index," said George Walker, head of UK institutional business at Standard Life Investments.

The iBoxx index is run by the International Index Company, set up in 2001 and backed by ten big banks. Walker told IPE that more and more clients were looking at iBoxx indices, adding they were seen as more representative of the market.

He explained his understanding was that there wasn't an incumbent manager and that the appointment reflected a new strategy by the trust. Consultant to the scheme was Watson Wyatt, he said.

Walker added that the firm has won 1.6 billion pounds of institutional business this year, taking total institutional assets under management to seven billion pounds - out of a total of 90 billion pounds.

"We are very happy with the solution offered by Standard Life Investments and look forward to working with them," Pensions Trust chief executive Richard Stroud was quoted as saying in a Standard Life release.

Meanwhile, the trust says it has appointed David Palmer as strategic investment officer. He formerly worked for Mellon Human Resources and Investor Solutions and Hewitt Bacon & Woodrow.

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