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first_imgLincoln Pensions suggested that the publication of separate TPR guidance, detailing how pension funds might support the growth of their sponsors, could be responsible for the lack of holistic-risk implementation at FTSE 350 companies.  According to research conducted by the firm, pension funds supporting the growth of their sponsor companies are forced to increase investment risk to offset lower contributions and a weaker covenant.  The research also found that FTSE 350 schemes that depend more on their employers, as opposed to their covenants, also tend to have higher allocations to risk-seeking assets.“[This indicates] schemes may be trying to invest their way to full funding,” Lincoln’s research says.“In doing this, they may be taking too much investment risk relative to the employer covenant rather than seeking increased contributions from their employers.”Lincoln also found that FTSE 350 schemes had an accounting deficit of £72bn, but this is combined with the £100bn of investment risk – with the average allocation to risk assets at 44%.Matthew Harrison, managing director at Lincoln Pensions, said: “The share of return-seeking assets does not decrease as the schemes get larger in the context of their employer, despite clear guidelines in TPR’s code of practice on funding [schemes].“[The] analysis may lead to scheme funding discussions that move away from the historical focus on funding today’s deficit towards a greater understanding of investment risk volatility and a balance in the scheme’s overall risk profile.” The pension funds of FTSE 350 companies are carrying £100bn (€140bn) in investment risk underwritten by their sponsors as they struggle to adapt to the regulator’s new holistic risk approach.Advisory firm Lincoln Pensions said it saw little evidence FTSE 350 schemes were implementing The Pensions Regulator’s (TPR) holistic risk-management approach.This approach, published in the DB Code of Funding last July, calls on schemes to account for the strength of the employer covenant when calculating investment-risk tolerance and thereby ensure risks between a company and its pension fund are balanced. The regulator said pension funds’ approach to funding and deficits should take into account all risks and that they should find appropriate investment-risk tolerances in line with risks stemming from sponsor failure.last_img read more

first_imgUsain Bolt’s coach is convinced the Jamaican phenomenon can once again put aside injury concerns and mediocre form to maintain his grip on the major sprint titles at this month’s world championship.The 28-year-old returns to the Bird’s Nest stadium where he first stunned the world at the 2008 Olympics for the Aug 22-30 championships, bidding to retain his 100 and 200 metres titles.Bolt is certainly short of competitive races and struggled for times this season until he twice clocked 9.87 seconds in the 100 metres in London late last month.His coach Glen Mills, though, believes the Olympic champion and world record holder in both sprints will be able to hit his straps when it matters.”The last two years have been very challenging for both Usain and myself,” Mills told Reuters.”Unfortunately, he has had a number of different injuries to overcome which have affected his training and the number of competitions he has been able to compete in.”But Bolt is a champion who knows nothing but excellence when performing on the world stage.”American Justin Gatlin enters Beijing in better form than the Jamaican with world leading marks of 9.74 and 19.57 seconds as he seeks to win his second world sprint double since first doing so in Helsinki in 2005. In seven head-to-head clashes over 100 metres, Bolt has beaten Gatlin six times.Bolt’s record at major meetings since he wrote his name into track history by winning the 100 and 200 metres in world record times at the Beijing Olympics is quite extraordinary.Only a false start in the 100m four years ago in Daegu has prevented him from sweeping the sprint titles at the 2009, 2011 and 2013 world championships and London Olympics.advertisementBolt, who turns 29 the day before the world championships open, underwent surgery on his left foot in 2014 which restricted him to run only a few 100m races as well as the 4×100 relay at the Commonwealth Games, where Jamaica won gold.This season, a blocked sacroiliac joint which restricted his movement and placed pressure on his knee and ankle has affected his preparations for Beijing and forced him to withdraw from the Paris and Lausanne Diamond League meets.”We have been making a number of changes on the way he trains and have been getting results,” said Mills. “However, I would have wanted him to have had more races.”Bolt’s season best marks of 9.87 and 20.13 are only ranked sixth and 19th respectively in the world this year and well shy of the records of 9.58 and 19.19 he set at the 2009 world championships.Like Mills, though, his agent Ricky Simms is confident Bolt can outdo all challengers once again.”Everyone knows that Usain shows up when it comes to championships,” he told Reuters by phone.”He’s been in this situation before, he’s had a few races where it didn’t go to plan and then at the Championships he always delivers, so I would say I’m extremely confident in Usain’s ability.”Mills, who also guided Yohan Blake (2011) and Kim Collins (2003) of St. Kitts and Nevis to 100m world titles, has now been coaching Bolt for a decade and said the lean times made the successes all the more enjoyable.”It certainly would mean a great dealt to me to continue to pilot his successes and more so in these difficult years.”last_img read more