GLOBAL - The United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund (UNJSPF) has reported further growth in the third quarter of 2009 as invesments delivered a return of 12.3%.

Figures from the latest quarterly investment report revealed the value of the pension fund increased by $3.998bn (€2.678bn) from $32.56bn at the end of June to $36.56bn by 30 September 2009.

That said, the UNJSPF - which covers 22 organisations and has more than 100,000 participants - still underperformed in relation to the benchmark’s preliminary return of 12.6% for the quarter, and over the year it has achieved a return of 3.2%, slightly below that its benchmark of 3.3%.

In contrast, the report noted the fund had outperformed over three- and five-year periods with returns of 2.2% and 6.6% respectively.

The UNJSPF claimed that active management had contributed to outperformance over long-term periods, but added “the management of the fund’s investments continues to focus on balancing the risk and reward expectations by apportioning the fund’s assets according to goals, risks and investment horizons”.

In the three months since June 2009, it revealed, the asset allocation of the fund had shifted slightly from the previous composition of 59.5% in equities, 34.8% in bonds, 4.3% in real estate and 1.4% in short-term assets, to 63% in equities and 30.8% in bonds. (See earlier IPE article: UN staff fund grew 12.3% in second quarter)

The pension fund, which has investments in 42 countries and seven international/regional institutions, also saw a slight decline in real estate investments from 4.3% to 3.8%, while the investments in short-term assets increased to 2.4%.

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