However, John Hattersley, director at the £5.9bn (€8.2bn) South Yorkshire Pension Fund, said in a meeting late last year that, if pressed, LGPS funds with internal investment capabilities would launch a judicial review were they forced into passive strategies.He told IPE that, while the South Yorkshire fund has not formally raised it internally, he has heard it casually mentioned by a number of LGPS.The South Yorkshire scheme, alongside other Northern English funds such as West Yorkshire, Derbyshire, Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Tyne and Wear, have a long history of internal asset management.Hattersley suggested the South Yorkshire fund would also examine the possibility of becoming a CIV should government legislation go against its wishes.Like many of its peers, the scheme, responding to the government consultation, argued that a mandatory shift to passive would lower standards within the LGPS rather than improve under-performing funds with high costs.Many of the 33 LGPS in London are currently setting up a CIV to pool investments outside of government legislation.Hattersley said funds with internal capabilities should be considered to manage CIVs in order to share experience and protect these capabilities.This could also be utilised if the UK government does force through listed assets and alternatives CIVs.“We are aware some of our peer group are thinking along similar lines, and, if it were an option, it would be one we would want to explore,” Hattersley said.He added that the central government’s delay in making a decision had forced the fund to put its expansion plans to one side.“There is a blight across all LGPS funds,” he said.“In our instance, we have put certain developments on hold, as we want to make sure we know and can see our future, as, like everybody, we are under financial constraints.“We don’t want to do something we would have to unwind fairly quickly if political decisions were taken causing us to do that.”South Yorkshire’s internal team orchestrated an 8.3% investment return over 2014 after strong returns in index-linked Gilts, private equity, property and North American equities.The fund’s £79m absolute return strategy returned 7.9% and made new investments into healthcare, distressed debt and illiquid credit. Local Government Pension Schemes (LGPS) in the UK are considering legal action against the government should it force through a mandatory shift to passive listed investments via collective vehicles.The proposals, first seen last year, have yet to be finalised, with no formal decision expected until after May’s general election due to friction within government departments.As LGPS funds await a formal decision from the government, schemes with in-house investment management teams have been weighing their options, including legal action.Original proposals from the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) recommended the creation of two collective investment vehicles (CIVs) for the 89 LGPS in England and Wales, one for all listed equities and bonds and one for alternatives.
The Switzerland international completed his medical at the newly-promoted Premier League club and makes the move from Hamburg. A statement on Watford’s official club website said: “Watford FC is delighted to announce the signing of Switzerland international Valon Behrami on a three-year deal.” The 30-year-old, who was born in the former Yugoslavia, has previously played in the English top flight for West Ham between July 2008 and January 2011. Behrami has earned 59 caps for his country and has scored twice on the international stage. He has also previously played for Italian sides Genoa, Verona, Lazio, Napoli and Fiorentina. Watford have announced the signing of midfielder Valon Behrami on a three-year deal for an undisclosed fee. Press Association
1 Ajax starlet Richario Zivkovic has taken a swipe at Arsenal forward Yaya Sanogo by claiming – ‘I’m better than you!’Sanogo joined the Dutch club on loan in August and has endured a tough start to life in Holland.He has played just 47 minutes of league football and was widely derided when a video of him missing chance after chance in a friendly against Almere went viral.And now Zivkovic, who is on loan at Willem II for the season, has stuck the boot in.The highly rated 19-year-old, who has scored twice in 12 games so far, says he should have been given the chance to prove himself at Ajax – instead of Sanogo.Zivkovic told ELF Voetbal: “Am I better than Sanogo? Yes!“I was already gone when Sanogo came in. But then Kolbeinn Soghtorsson left.“I wanted to compete with Arek Milik for the first striker position.“I did not want to be a second striker with no prospect of being a first striker.” Yaya Sanogo
The ‘new blu’ Radisson Blu Plaza Sydney, which has recently undergone a $13.5 million redesign, will be turning PINK for the month of October as part of a global initiative to raise funds for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.The inaugural campaign “’LOVE BLU, THINK PINK!’ will see nearly 300 Radisson Blu® hotels in 69 countries and territories supporting this worthy initiative with the hotels all turning one of their guest rooms pink for the entire month. The rooms will include pink décor touches and other special pink amenities. “Radisson Blu is pleased to announce its support in the fight against breast cancer,” said Rose Anderson, Vice President, branding Radisson Blu. “In partnership with our guests, we look forward to raising funds for breast cancer research and awareness.”At the end of the month, 10 per cent of the revenue generated from the sale of a Radisson Blu Plaza Sydney dedicated pink Business Class guest room will be donated to the National Breast Cancer Foundation (NBCF). The hotel also is giving guests the opportunity to make individual donations to the Foundation during their stay.Radisson Blu General Manager, Peter Tudehope, said: “We are delighted to be a part of this inaugural campaign and have selected the NBCF as they are one of Australia’s most respected and recognised charities. This is only the first year of the campaign with plans to grow the concept in the future and we look forward to raising funds for this very worthy Foundation.”