POLAND - Managers at Polish pension companies recorded losses of PLN6.5bn (€1.8bn) for the month of January.

Adverse market conditions led to a record fall in pension fund asset returns in Poland of -3.9% or PLN5.5bn.

This drop topped the worst downturn in assets so far, seen in November last year with PLN4.4bn, and the shift in assets at that time was mostly because of higher payouts from the system and transfers to other funds.

However, January's fall in asset value was for the first time in months was almost exclusively down to bad management results, according to domestic research firm Analizy Online.

"Very high dynamics of stock exchange indices all over the world, including Poland, led to a weaker management results", the analysts noted in their latest report on pension fund assets.
All indices on the Warsaw stock exchange (WSE) fell by around 14% last month.

Therefore, "managers had a huge problem" when attempting to outperform their benchmarks which consist of 30% equity indices on the WSE and 70% index of treasury bonds.

The biggest losses were suffered by Aviva subsidiary Commercial Union pension fund and the pension unit Złota Jesień of Polish largest insurer PZU, seeing downtuns of 4.4% and 4.2% respectively.

The smallest fund Polsat was able to keep the losses to a minimum of 2.9%.

Combined assets in all 15 Polish pension funds now stand at PLN134.6bn up from PLN116,6bn in January 2007.

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