A tale of two pensions: UK & Australia Australian Superannuation Investment Conference, Sept 5th 2013 Bev Durston, Edgehaven Pty Ltd A tale of two pensions: UK & Australia • • • • • • • Background and experience Overview of pensions: UK & Australia Compare & contrast DB ideas for DC pension funds Investment observations Next generation pensions Summary Background and Experience • Pensions experience in Australia, Singapore & UK • Head of Portfolio Risk, Global Portfolio Manager, Deputy CIO • 2008 to 2013: • BA Pensions: Head of Alternative Assets; • DC Trustee for BA Pensions • Edgehaven Pty Ltd (Royal Mail Pension Plan) Overview of pensions: UK • Heavy DB influence but now switching focus to DC • Cutting back on DB promises, closing schemes to future accrual • Industry dominated by DB assets • Initiation of “compulsory” DC to broaden the scope of pensions investing • Australia 20 years ago? Overview of pensions: UK Overview of pensions: UK Overview of pensions: Australia • Heavy focus on accumulation: aim only to produce a pot of money at retirement • Balances not (yet) big enough for meaningful incomes in retirement • Longevity risk: Members face a very real risk of running out of money in old age • Increasing age care costs with no policy (insurance) solution in place • Members can take 100% cash at retirement Compare & contrast Pension Policy Framework: Item Australia UK DC Super contributions Compulsory, 9% Auto enrolled to 8%, opt out Taxation in accumulation Taxed but advantaged Tax free At retirement Up to 100% cash Max 25% cash Govt (Age) pension Mean tested Non means tested Income stream in retirement N/a Forced annuitisation Compare & contrast A key difference: No member choice of scheme in the UK Bespoke member analysis: Trustees focus on their member characteristics and devise policy according to their needs; No league tables produced which rank returns; No “peer group risk”; No “one size fits all” investment default policy in DC; DB ideas for DC pension funds 1. Switch to an income focus in retirement DB ideas for DC pension funds 1. Switch to an income focus in retirement; 2. Benchmarking: Define your income objective as an inflation linked bond Gap Analysis: “Glide path” plan to move towards it DB ideas for DC pension funds 1. Switch to an income focus in retirement 2. Benchmarking: Define your income objective as an inflation linked bond Gap Analysis: “Glide path” plan to move towards it 3. Manage longevity risk: Build tools to transfer longevity risk Consider annuitisation: Ideally “staged” but possibly forced Investment observations DC Default investment policy: “One size fits all” investment is a poor proxy for risk return appetite across time. • Why is a 25 year old invested identically to a 59 year old? • Do they have the same risk appetite as one approaches a retirement decision point? Consider Target date (or Lifecycle) investing Investment observations Source Mercer Consulting Investment observations DC investment breadth Why is this different from DB? DC members seem “second class citizens” Over reliance on equity risk rather than diversified growth Investment observations Capital allocation DOES NOT EQUAL risk Source: Blackrock Investment observations Using diversified growth strategies and tapering risk before retirement offers less extreme outcomes than 100% equities: Investment strategy 100% Equities Median income replacement ratio: Downside 1 in 10 chance: Min income replacement ratio: Max income replacement ratio: 70% 33% 20% 220% 50/50 DGF + Equities 72% 42% 28% 150% (Assuming 40 year investing of 14% contributions and 5 year lifestyle policy) Source: Mercer Consulting 100% DGF 69% 44% 35% 125% Investment observations DC investment breadth Why is this different from DB? DC members seem “second class citizens” Inappropriate focus on liquidity rather than on risk Investment observations Return % Using only a risk and return lens this investment strategy look diversified….. Equities Property Bonds Cash Risk % Investment observations More Liquid Return % Equities Equities Property Cash Bonds Listed Property Medium Liquidity Bonds Less Liquid Cash Property Risk % Using risk and return only it looks diversified….. But this strategy becomes one dimensional using a liquidity lens Risk % Investment observations More Liquid More Liquid Equities Equities Cash Bonds Listed Property Medium Liquidity Cash Listed Property Medium Liquidity High Yield Frontier markets Emerging mkt debt Convertibles Distressed debt Direct lending Less Liquid Bonds Private Debt Loans Absolute return Infrastructure Less Liquid Property Risk % A one dimensional strategy on liquidity misses out on diversifying, less liquid opportunities Private Equity Property Risk % Next generation pension schemes • Recognition that the individual is ill equipped to manage the many risks of DC: The European ideal: risk sharing between employer and employee UK considering “Defined Ambition” and “DB minus” Consider a guaranteed minimum outcome for DC Summary • • • • • • Similar origins for UK and Australian schemes Australia now moving to focus on the decumulation phase Ideas from DB may be useful for DC Investment strategy has evolved beyond one size fits all Policy changes may be needed Next generation pensions will be different again….. Summary If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always got. (Henry Ford) Summary If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always got. (Henry Ford) For Australian Super Schemes: “Static is the new risk” ?