Crossing the Rubicon

The latest news and opinion from Rubicon Investment Consulting

Irish Pension Funds decline as Greek crisis continues

June saw both equity and bond markets deliver negative returns as investors focussed on negotiations to resolve the Greek crisis. The unexpected calling of a referendum to be held on July 5th (which ultimately resulted in a “No” vote), and the temporary closing of the Greek banking system, further unsettled markets concerned about the potential fall-out of a Greek exit from the Euro.

Irish pension managed funds declined 3.3% on average during June. Davy Asset Management were ranked top this month with a return of -3.0%, while Kleinwort Benson Investors propped up the league table with a return of -3.7%. With negative returns in April, somewhat offset by a positive May, the average fund return over the second quarter of the year was a disappointing -2.9%. The best performing funds over the quarter were those of Aviva Investors and New Ireland, which returned -2.5%. The weakest performer was the Setanta Asset Management managed fund which declined 3.7%.

The first half of 2015 remains quite strong, with an average managed fund return of 10.0%. Merrion Investment Managers top the table over the year to date with a return of 13.5%, while Setanta Asset Management produced the lowest return at 8.1%. Over the past twelve months, the average fund return was 20.0%. Returns for the year ranged from 26.5% (Merrion Investment Managers) to 14.5% (New Ireland), representing a difference of 12% between the best and worst performing funds over the past twelve months.

The average managed fund return has been a very strong 16.7% per annum over the past three years. The five-year average return is a healthy 12.4% per annum. Irish group pension managed fund returns over the past ten years have been 5.9% per annum on average.