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IPE special report May 2018

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Rohner quits PKB

Switzerland’s Sfr34bn (e21bn) PKB federal pension fund for civil servants which started investing in financial markets in July has already lost its first chief portfolio manager Kuno Rohner, before he took over the job full time.
Peter Thomann, chief treasurer (check) and Rohner’s superior at the fund believes financial reasons contributed to the surprising departure.
As a civil servant Rohner’s salary was limited to between Sfr100,000-150,000 (e60,000-95,000), where-as in the financial industry a comparable job would be paid at least double, bonus excluded.
“Many officials grab such opportunities with both hands,” says Thomann.
However, Rohner denies any financial reasons for his departure saying that under the PKB administration he didn’t find the team work he was used to in private companies.
“Too much friction between different ministries, unclear authority and unacceptable interference had a strong braking effect on carrying out a good job,” he adds.
Rohner’s resignation will not affect the investment strategy or mandates of the PKB fund, a spokesperson says, adding that a replacement for Rohner is expected to be made in January next year.

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