UK - Both the BBC and Schroders have declined to comment on a newspaper report that the broadcaster has axed the asset manager from running a pension fund mandate.

The Sunday Telegraph, without citing its sources, said Schroders was "understood" to have lost a mandate to run "a significant portion" of the BBC scheme.

Both the BBC and Schroders declined to comment. "The BBC does not comment on such rumours," a spokeswoman told IPE.

The report saw Schroders' shares drop 15.5 pence or 1.6%, according to Bloomberg News.

Schroders has already disclosed that it has lost £6.4bn (€9.5bn) in institutional assets so far this year.

Meanwhile, it emerged that the BBC will raise employee contributions from their current 6% to 7.5% on 1 April 2007 with employer contributions rising from 7.5% to 17.3% on the same date.

The last actuarial valuation of the fund in 2005 undertaken by Watson Wyatt showed a £13m surplus in the fund. The next valuation will be undertaken on 1 April 2007, one year earlier than scheduled.