Crossing the Rubicon

The latest news and opinion from Rubicon Investment Consulting

QE Boosts Irish Pension Fund Returns

Irish pension managed funds delivered further positive returns during March, as a very weak euro offset negative foreign equity market returns over the month. As the ECB began their €60 billion per month asset purchase programme, Eurozone bond yields plummeted and the euro fell sharply against all major currencies. This, along with low inflation and fuel prices boosting consumer spending, supported Eurozone companies, while the weak euro also increased the returns on overseas assets for Irish investors.

During March, Irish pension managed funds gained 2.6% on average. Merrion Investment Managers took the top spot with a return of 4.4% for the month, while Davy Asset Management propped up the league table with a return of 1.8%. Pension managed funds have returned a very strong 13.3% on average over the first quarter of 2015. Merrion Investment Managers are ahead of the pack over this period with a return of 17.0%, while Kleinwort Benson Investors were the laggards, but have still gained a respectable 11.8% so far this year. Over the past twelve months, the average fund return was 28.7%. Returns for the year ranged from 34.3% (Merrion Investment Managers) to 22.1% (New Ireland).

The average managed fund return has been a very strong 17.5% per annum over the past three years. The five-year average return is a healthy 12.2% per annum. Irish group pension managed fund returns over the past ten years have been 6.9% per annum on average.