Investment returns at the three professional pension funds run by Denmark’s Unipension slipped lower in the first half of this year, but the provider was able to maintain its investment strategy due to its stable solvency position.

Reporting results for the six months from January to June, Unipension said the Architects’ Pension Fund (AP) made a 4.4% return on investments before tax between January and June this year, while MP Pension, which covers academics in Denmark, produced 4.2%.

Meanwhile, the Pension Fund for Agricultural Academics and Veterinary Surgeons (PJD) returned 4.5%.

The returns compare with the first half of 2014, when the pension funds produced 6.1%, 6.3% and 6.4%, respectively.

Unipension said: “The pension funds’ solvency continues to be very good, which gives them the opportunity to maintain their investment strategy in spite of the turbulence on investment markets in recent weeks.”

In the first half, markets had been characterised by a moderate rise in global equities markets, while yields on Danish and German government bonds had generally fallen in the first quarter, but then risen strongly in most of the second quarter, Unipension said.

All three pension funds had seen a rise in contributions in the six-month period.

AP’s overall contributions grew to DKK157.4m (€21.1m) in the first half, up DKK7.8m or 5.2% from the same period last year, while MP Pension’s contributions were up DKK75m or 4.2% at DKK1.86bn.

PJD saw its contributions grow DKK6.8m or 3.8% to DKK183.1m.

Active membership at the pension funds grew by 1.7%, 2.2% and 1.0% respectively, according to the funds’ annual reports