Weekly Digest: US pension to exclude HK investments; NPS makes crypto foray

A US federal government pension decides to exclude investments in Hong Kong; Philippines' Maharlika fund can finance up to 80 potential projects; Korean pension snaps up stake in US crypto exchange; Australia's ART brings one more super fund under its fold; and more.
Weekly Digest: US pension to exclude HK investments; NPS makes crypto foray


The main US federal government pension will exclude investments in Hong Kong, in addition to mainland China, from its $68 billion international fund, amid rising tensions between the world’s two largest economies.

The $771 billion Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board said it will switch the benchmark index for its international fund, the I fund, effectively cutting exposure to Hong Kong, according to a statement on Nov 14. It already avoids investments on the Chinese mainland.

The I fund, which manages pensions for nearly seven million federal employees, is shifting to the MSCI All Country World ex-USA ex-China ex-Hong Kong Investable Market Index next year.

The fund was previously benchmarked against the MSCI Europe, Australasia and Far East Index.

Source: Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board

Korea's National Pension Service (NPS) has purchased a large stake in Coinbase, a US cryptocurrency exchange, for the first time, paving the way for future direct investment in cryptocurrencies.

The Korean pension fund bought 282,673 shares of Coinbase during the third quarter, according to a stock holdings report filed on November 16 by the NPS to the US Securities and Exchange.

The purchase totalled $19,934,100.

While this was not the NPS’ first investment in cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, it was the first time that NPS invested in a cryptocurrency exchange, which has drawn much interest from the investment industry.

In the past, the NPS only indirectly invested in crypto exchanges by participating in funds raised by venture capital (VC) firms.

Source: SEC

President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said that that there are about 80 potential infrastructure projects that can be financed by the Maharlika Investment Fund (MIF).

Marcos made his comments at the closing keynote at the Philippine Economic Briefing in San Francisco, California on the sidelines of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit.

Source: Presidential Communications Office



The Australian Retirement Trust (ART) has successfully merged with Commonwealth Bank Group Super (CBA Group Super), resulting in the addition of $8.05 billion (A$12.3 billion) in retirement savings and 63,700 new members.

This merger represents ART's largest corporate merger to date, increasing its total funds under management to approximately $272 billion. The transition was divided into two tranches, with the first tranche already completed and the second tranche, involving 3,700 lifetime pension members, expected to occur in the first half of 2024.

This merger follows ART's completion of another major merger earlier this year between Woolworths and Endeavour Group's offerings.

ART is also in the process of merging with AvSuper, Alcoa of Australia Retirement Plan, and Oracle Superannuation Plan.

Source: Australian Retirement Trust

Macquarie Asset Management has launched Aula Energy, an Australian onshore renewable energy business aimed at attracting long-term investment capital accroding to a release on November 20.

Aula Energy will develop, build, and operate utility-scale wind, solar, and integrated battery projects in Australia and New Zealand, creating a diverse portfolio of actively managed green energy generation assets.

Sydney-based Macquarie Asset Management had around A$892 billion ($575.75 billion) of assets under management as of September 2023.

Source: Macquarie Asset Management


India's tax inspectors searched the office of British insurance giant Aviva's life insurance unit near New Delhi last week and seized documents as part of an investigation into alleged tax evasion, sources familiar with the matter said.

Officers of India's Directorate General of GST (Goods and Services Tax) Intelligence also seized laptops during their visit on Nov. 7 and questioned some officials including the India CEO Asit Rath and Chief Financial Officer Sonali Athalye, said two of the three sources, who declined to be named due to the sensitivity of the matter.

Source: Reuters


The Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF) has expanded its asset manager registration system to alternatives investments fund of funds, aimed at providing the pension fund with greater flexibility in choosing firms for investment mandates.

This system only applies to discretionary investment management schemes and doesn't apply to GPIF's direct investment as a limited partner (LP) in fund vehicles.

To be eligible for the system, asset managers must be registered under the Financial Instrument and Exchange Act which regulates securities and financial firms, have a minimum of track record in alternative investing of five years, and manage at least ¥30 billion ($202 million) of alternative assets.

Source: GPIF


Korean Reinsurance (Korean Re) has launched a request for proposals (RFP) for a domestic equity mandate of up to W100 billion benchmarked against the MSCI Korea ESG Universal Index.

Korean Re will decide on the number of asset managers for the mandate after evaluating incoming proposals. The mandate will range between W50 billion and W100 billion.

Asset managers bidding for the mandate must have at least W4 trillion of assets under management of which 60% should be in equities.

Source: Korean Re

The above briefs are curated from press releases and third-party media sources.


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