SWEDEN – AP7, manager of the default option in Sweden’s national defined contribution system, has awarded a number of alpha equity and currency mandates.

It awarded equity alpha mandates to Amundi, Carnegie (which won two mandates), Invesco, Nomura, Sumitomo and UBS.

Currency alpha mandates were awarded to State Street and Macro Currency Group.

The tender process started last year, with Kirstein, the Danish investment consultant, advising AP7.

The buffer fund is continuing to implement the alpha/beta separation it began in 2005.

In accordance with this strategy, the recently awarded mandates will be ‘pure alpha’ – long/short equity mandates where long positions are financed through a securities borrowing system where the managers borrow equities before selling them with the intension of shorting them.

In other news, Sweden’s church pension fund last year returned just over 9% overall.

The equity portfolio returned 12.8%, allowing the fund to largely offset the 13% loss from the year previous.

The domestic equity portfolio returned 19.1%, compared with 8.8% for the international equity portfolio.

The strength of the krona resulted in currency losses of SEK36m (€4.3m) on the international portfolio.

The fixed income portfolio returned 7.6%, real estate 6.9% and alternatives 9.2%.

The fund’s solvency ratio increased from 134% to 141%, while assets totalled SEK11.3bn at year-end.

Lastly, Brummer Life, the life arm of Brummer & Partners, one of the largest hedge fund providers in the Nordic region, has appointed Joakim Bähr as head of external relations and corporations.

He joins from Nordnet, a Swedish online saving provider, where he was head of business sales.

He joined Nordnet in 2006 and has had several roles, including head of sales at the company’s pension insurance arm.