Swiss pension funds are awaiting for a final decision on a motion that would increase their ability to increase their investments in infrastructure.Thomas Weibel, the former member of the Green Liberal Group (GL), proposed a motion in 2015 to split infrastructure investments from the broader category of alternative investments in pension funds’ asset allocations, as it is stipulated in the regulation for occupational pensions (BVV 2).The lower house of the Swiss parliament, the national council, and the upper house, the council of state, have already approved the motion following the rejection by the government.Hanspeter Konrad, managing director of Swiss pension fund association ASIP, told IPE that it is still unclear whether the amendment to the regulation will go ahead. The investment limit would be increased to 25% in total – 10% for infrastructure plus 15% for other alternative investmentsArticle 53, paragraph 1 letter f, defines a separate category for infrastructure investments, opposed to hedge funds, private equity, insurance linked securities and commodities, under letter e of the same article.Flückiger noted that the motion wants “certainly” promote investments in infrastructure and make them more attractive for pension funds.“Basically, nothing changes just because infrastructure investments will no longer count as alternatives in the future,” he said, explaining that pension funds now have more freedom before making use of the investment options under Article 50 (4) BVV2.In future the investment limit would be increased to 25% in total – 10% for infrastructure plus 15% for other alternative investments.Risks and returns“Infrastructure investments are characterized by a high value retention with stable, constant yields, and Pensionskassen can, among other things, also invest in ecologically sustainable projects,” Konrad said.“The diversification of assets gives funds a greater freedom of action and ultimately, this has a risk-reducing effect on assets,” he added.“The diversification of assets gives funds a greater freedom of action and ultimately, this has a risk-reducing effect on assets”Hanspeter Konrad, managing director of ASIPOn the other hand, political, regulatory and operational risks must also be taken into account, he continued. “Due to their size, immobility, illiquidity, counterparty risks and their complexity, infrastructure investments show risks that should not be underestimated.”Flückiger said: “Infrastructure investments are very long-term investments and the board of trustees [of a scheme] has to consider whether to commit in the long term. Like other alternative investments, for example private equity, infrastructure investments are very illiquid, have complex structures, high fees, and there are also political, regulatory and counterparty risks to consider.”“It does not mean that boards no longer have an obligation to exercise prudence, if the BVV2 is amended and infrastructure is not considered as alternative investment,” he concluded.To read the digital edition of IPE’s latest magazine click here. “In the current low interest rate environment, Pensionskassen will continue to examine various investment opportunities,” he said, adding that infrastructure investments have already raised increased investor appetite in recent years. “With appropriate offers, growth is likely to be expected,” he said.Heinrich Flückiger, senior consultant at Prevanto, told IPE the current low interest rate environment can create the condition for Pensionskassen to deal with the possibility of investing in infrastructure assets.“For many Pensionskassen, the focus is on expanding real value investments – shares, real estate in Switzerland and abroad,” he said, adding that a new infrastructure category “will certainly lead” to a shift in nominal values on the investments into this new category.The Swiss Federal Social Insurance Office, BSV, held consultations on the amendment to the BVV 2 until 20 March.According to consultation documents, the ultimate goal of the motion proposed by Weibel is to boost the real value of assets in energy, mobility, and health infrastructure.Increasing value of these assets would lead pension funds to invest in sustainable projects in Switzerland at a greater extent than in previous years, at the same time promoting the energy transition policies of the federal council and parliament.Under the new article 55 letter f, pension funds can now invest up to 10% of their assets in infrastructure, while so far the limit for investments in alternatives, which include infrastructure, is a maximum of 15%.
UNDATED (AP) — North Carolina State has accepted a recommendation for its NCAA case involving recruiting violations tied to former one-and-done star Dennis Smith Jr. to go through the new independent investigation process for complex cases.In a statement Wednesday, Chancellor Randy Woodson questioned whether the school “can receive an objective or fair hearing” in a typical infractions-committee route. Woodson said the Independent Accountability Resolution Process is “the only remaining option.”The NCAA created the IARP following reform proposals from the commission led by former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in the wake of a federal corruption investigation into college basketball. It includes independent investigators and decision-makers with no direct ties to member schools. Rulings cannot be appealed.North Carolina State was charged last summer with four violations.In other college basketball news: Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditWhatsappVIRUS OUTBREAK-SPORTSTrack world championships moved to 2022UNDATED (AP) — The track world championships in Eugene, Oregon, have been rescheduled for July 15-24, 2022. — The NFL’s Arizona Cardinals are teaming with State Farm to donate one million meals to local food banks to help families during the new coronavirus crisis. The team says the number of people seeking help from local food banks has more than doubled while the number of donations has decreased dramatically. The Cardinals have already made a $1 million donation to the Arizona Coronavirus Relief Fund and organized three blood drives at State Farm Stadium to help boost the area’s shrinking blood supply. Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury was among those who donated blood.— The Tokyo Olympic flame has been taken off public display in Japan. And it’s not clear when it will reappear again, or where — or under what conditions. The flame arrived in Japan from Greece on March 26. After the Tokyo Olympics and the torch relay were postponed until next year, the flame was put on display in the northeastern prefecture of Fukushima. It was supposed to remain on display through the end of April, but it was removed to an undisclosed location after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (shin-zoh AH’-bay) declared a state of emergency yesterday that includes limiting large crowds.NHL-DRAFTLafrenière tops list of NHL draft-eligible prospectsUNDATED (AP) — Alexis Lafrenière holds the top spot in the NHL Central Scouting Bureau’s final ranking of draft-eligible prospects. The next step remains uncertain for the 18-year-old forward and hundreds of his fellow prospects. At 6-foot-1 and 200 pounds, Lafrenière has consistently topped the NHL scouting bureau’s list of draft-eligible prospects. The NHL draft, scheduled to take place in Montreal in late June, has been postponed. So have the draft lottery to determine the top seedings and weeklong pre-draft combine in Buffalo, New York. The draft can’t feasibly be held until the playoffs are completed or the entire season canceled.Forward Quinton Byfield and defenseman Jamie Drysdale, both from the Toronto area, were ranked second and third among North American prospects. Forward Tim Stuetzle, the German professional league’s rookie of the year, was ranked as the top European prospect.NHL-OILERS-CAVEOilers’ Cave out of emergency surgery, remains in comaUNDATED (AP) — The Edmonton Oilers say forward Colby Cave has undergone emergency surgery after suffering a brain bleed. The event was pushed back a year because the Tokyo Olympics were delayed until 2021 amid the coronavirus pandemic. The track worlds were originally scheduled for Aug. 6-15, 2021.World Athletics president Sebastian Coe says 2022 will be a “bonanza for athletics fans around the world” with the Commonwealth Games beginning in Birmingham, England, only three days after the track worlds. The multisport European Championship is currently slated for Aug. 11-21 in Munich.World Athletics has also postponed the bidding processes for 2023 World Athletics Series events. They will now open in November 2020.In other developments related to the coronavirus:— Formula One says it will furlough half of its staff until the end of May and senior executives will take pay cuts amid the coronavirus pandemic. F1 says senior leadership figures will take “voluntary pay cuts while still continuing to work and not in furlough,” and CEO Chase Carey will take a “much deeper” pay cut. F1 has postponed eight races so far this season and the Monaco Grand Prix has been canceled. The season is currently scheduled to begin in France on June 28. More postponements are likely to turn into cancellations, but F1 has said it is still hoping to stage between 15 and 18 races out of the original 22. Associated Press April 8, 2020 Update on the latest sports The team posted on Twitter that doctors removed a colloid cyst that was causing pressure on Cave’s brain Tuesday. He remains in a medically induced coma at Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto.Cave’s wife, Emily, said earlier on Instagram that doctors were “fighting to keep him alive” in surgery. “We need a miracle,” Emily Cave wrote. “Please pray for my husband and best friend.”The 25-year-old Cave scored one goal in 11 games with Edmonton this season. COLLEGE BASKETBALL-NEWSNC State accepts NCAA case referral for independent process — The president of the International Paralympic Committee says the body has “cash-flow” problems because of the Olympic and Paralympic postponement until 2021. Andrew Parsons says about 5% of spending is being cut from the IPC’s budget. Parsons says the problem is due partly to broadcast rights holders who want to delay their payments until the product is delivered. Parsons says it’s not a question of “losing money” but rather some temporary belt tightening.— The players and coach on Switzerland’s national soccer team have declined to take more than $1 million of payments that were due from their federation in 2020. The team was scheduled to play in the now-postponed European Championship in June and had two games in Qatar canceled last month because of the coronavirus pandemic. The shutdown of games has cost the Swiss soccer body millions of dollars. Federation chairman Dominique Blanc says it’s a “magnificent gesture” from the players. Blanc tested positive for the virus three weeks ago. Team captain Stephan Lichtsteiner says “we wanted to set an example and show solidarity.”— A two-time Olympic finalist in the 800 meters has died after getting infected with the coronavirus. The Italian Olympic Committee says Donato Sabia has died. He was 56. Sabia finished fifth in the 800 at the 1984 Los Angeles Games and seventh at the 1988 Seoul Games. He also won the 800 at the 1984 European Indoor Championships. Sabia died in his hometown of Potenza in southern Italy shortly after his father also died from the virus.— A groom who worked at Belmont Park has died of coronavirus complications. The New York Racing Association says Martin Zapata died Tuesday. The 63-year-old native of Panama had spent the past two years working for trainer Tom Morley in New York, which has been hard-hit by the pandemic. NYRA says Zapata tested positive for COVID-19 on March 24 and was hospitalized two days later. He lived and worked at Belmont Park.— The opening of the stable area and training track at Saratoga in upstate New York is being delayed because of the coronavirus pandemic. The training track was set to open April 15. The New York Racing Association says it has yet to decide an appropriate date to safely open. Saratoga’s racing season is still scheduled to begin on July 16 and run through Sept. 7. In New Jersey, Monmouth Park has pushed back the opening of its stable area until June 1, a month later than planned. Live racing there is set to start July 4 weekend. — DePaul guard Jalen Coleman-Lands has been granted a sixth year of eligibility by the NCAA. Coleman-Lands was limited to nine games in his first season competing at DePaul in 2018-19 after breaking his left hand. He played in all 32 games this past season and led the Blue Demons with 63 3-pointers while averaging 11 points. The Indianapolis product spent his first two years at Illinois and sat out the 2017-18 season after transferring to DePaul. He has averaged nearly 11 points in 41 games for the Blue Demons. DePaul announced the decision Wednesday.NFL-NEWSFALCONS-UNIFORMSFalcons to wear all-black home uniforms as part of redesignATLANTA (AP) — The Atlanta Falcons are moving to black pants with black jerseys for their home uniforms in 2020 as part of a redesign the team says respects past fashion choices with updates “to match the modern progression of Atlanta.” The team’s first redesign in 17 years also include white jerseys and white pants for road uniforms. The Falcons will wear continue to use black helmets.Each new look features red stripes. The black home jerseys will have white numbers. The all-white road uniforms include black numbers.Falcons President Rich McKay says the redesign was influenced by feedback from fans.
AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to MoreAddThisThe ACC Concrete Technology program has been successfully running for 50 years! Many of the instructors in the program are former students and are current professionals. Students feel that their experience at ACC has prepared them for their future internships and jobs. On Friday November 3rd the college will host a ceremony to honor and celebrate the program.AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to MoreAddThisContinue ReadingPrevious First Fright Lights Alpena A Spooky SuccessNext DNR Seeks Bear Dens