Denmark’s Velliv said today it still expects a positive full-year return for 2023 despite year-to-date investment gains retreating in the third quarter, adding that a major new forestry investment should yield 6-7% in annual returns.

Releasing January-to-September results, the mutual pension provider reported that investment returns for the nine months stood at between 3.1% and 5.5% for a customer with 15 years to retirement and medium-risk profile, depending on the actual product.

The year had started with good returns, the firm said, but added: “In recent months, however, we have seen that the return has fallen back somewhat.”

Chief investment officer Anders Stensbøl said Velliv was intensifying its work with the green transition, having lost patience earlier this year with fossil extraction companies failing to live up to the objectives of the Paris Agreement and decided to divest upstream oil and gas companies.

“Most recently, we have invested a billion in certified forests and entered into a unique collaboration with the World Bank,” he said.

Earlier this month, the firm announced it was allocating DKK2bn (€268m) to certified forestry via Manulife Investment Management. In its Q3 report today, it said that investment – of which DKK1bn has already made – is expected to contribute annual return in the region of 6-7%.

Velliv said its collaboration with the World Bank on investment in social and green bonds had led, for example, to an investment with a focus on clean drinking water in Vietnam and on the biodiversity of the Galapagos Islands. It said these investments contributed to solid risk-adjusted returns for its customers.

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