NETHERLANDS – The three largest pension funds in the Netherlands – ABP, PGGM and PME – have released their quarterly portfolio figures today, with returns ranging from –0.5% to +0.5%.

Civil service fund Stichting Pensioenfonds ABP said it made a second quarter returns of 0% - leading to a first half return of 4.2%. The size of the fund was stable at 156.9 billion euros while its coverage ratio stood at 112%.

Health care fund PGGM made what it termed a “modest” overall return of 0.5% in the second quarter of 2004 – which it said mainly reflected the positive (0.9%) contribution by equities. Its overall return for the first six months was 4.1%, taking its portfolio to 55.7 billion euros from 54.9 billion euros.

It had a second quarter return of –1.1% in fixed income, due to higher interest rates worldwide. “All other asset categories showed a positive return in the second quarter,” said chief investment officer Roderick Munsters.

Metals industry pension fund PME, or Pensioenfonds voor de Metalektro, meanwhile reported a negative yield on investments in the period.

With a -0.5% return in the second quarter, the overall first-half return was 3.8%. The overall coverage ratio slipped to 110% from 112% at the end of the first quarter. PME’s fixed income portfolio – 53% of its assets - returned –1.4% in the quarter.

Meanwhile, PGGM has announced that Interpolis is to take over the insurance portfolio of the fund’s subsidiary Careon Schadeverzekeringen NV. Financial terms were not disclosed.

The Zeist-based scheme said it has decided that the provision of sickness benefit and disability insurance via Careon “no longer forms part of its core activities”. Careon staff would transfer to Interpolis.