CPBI Turns 60

Published By: Benefits and Pensions Monitor | June 16, 2020

While reviewing the content for this commemorative presentation marking the 60th anniversary of the Canadian Pension and Benefits Institute (CPBI), I realized that I have been around in the industry for almost as long as the CPBI. The change in name from the Canadian Pension and Benefits Conference to the Canadian Pension and Benefits Institute took place in 1995. I arrived at Benefits and Pensions Monitor in 1997, almost two years exactly later.


FSRA Offers New Approach

Published By: DAVID VINCENT | June 3, 2020

May 22 Ontario’s Financial Services Regulatory Authority published on its website a new ‘Approach’ entitled ‘Limitations on Commuted Value Transfers and Annuity Purchases (DB Pension Plans). It also provided new commentary in a Q&A (see Question 6 and 7) on whether the ‘market shock’ that began in March 2020 caused by the Covid-19 pandemic should be taken into account in actuarial valuation reports prepared as of a date earlier than the market shock – for example, a valuation report as at December 31, 2019 (which would typically be required to be filed with FSRA nine months later, i.e. September 30).


The Case For Virtual Care

Published By: Benefits and Pensions Monitor | May 11, 2020

Telemedicine has been a discussion point in recent years. Those across the healthcare spectrum have been extolling its virtues and lobbying for the necessary legislative changes to make it accessible to everyone across the Canada. However, necessity is the mother of invention and the COVID-19 pandemic has brought it to the forefront. Mary-Lou MacDonald, national practice lead, health and performance, at HUB International, explains why this is an important benefit employers can offer in benefits plans in the article ‘The Changing Face Of Healthcare Choosing the Right Telemedicine Provider’


Why Asset Managers Cannot Be Passive On Climate Change

Published By: Benefits and Pensions MONITOR | April 21, 2020

Climate change is causing the most significant shift in the investment uni­verse David Cumming, chief investment officer, equities, and head of UK equities at Aviva Investors, has seen in his 35 years in the indus­try. The threat of rising temperatures is well understood ‒ mass extinctions, mass migration, flooding, and environmental de­struction, he says. Given the consequences, investors cannot wait for governments to respond. But if asset managers are to play a critical role in the response to the crisis, they will have to adopt a more radical and active ap­proach, he says in the article ‘Why Asset Managers Cannot Be Passive On Climate Change.’


Beyond Emerging Market Allocations: Institutional Investors Signal a Shift to Dedicated China Equity Investments

Published By: Matthews Asia | April 16, 2020

April 7, 2020 Stamford, CT USA
 — Based on a global survey, institutional investors (pension funds, endowments, foundations, and other institutional “asset owners”) are planning to modify their approach to China public equity allocations. This and other findings are presented in a research report by Greenwich Associates and Matthews Asia titled, “Crafting the Optimal China Allocation Strategy: The Asset Owner’s Perspective”.



The bull gets the virus

Published By: STEPHEN AUTH | April 13, 2020

The bull has gotten the virus and markets are in the midst of what has seen in some other great secular-bull markets: a short term “cyclical bear” that typically sees a 20 per cent to 30 per cent decline in stocks from the highs, and occasionally a decline as high as 35 per cent to 40 per cent, followed by a choppy period of solidifying the new base before eventually going on to new highs, says Stephen Auth, chief investment officer, equities, at Federated Hermes. In the article ‘The Bull Gets The Virus’ at the Benefits and Pensions Monitor website, he says history tells us that in times of potential meltdown, modern governments will not step back and let it happen and the U.S. Fed and government both responded with the largest and widest intervention in history. “This should get us through the worst economic period that looms in Q2,” he says.


GEMOLOGIST: Inequality: the tension between growth and social justice in emerging markets

Published By: Gary Greenberg, Kunjal Gala, Christopher Clube & Jasper Wright | March 12, 2020

The tension over inequality between growth and social justice in emerging markets is rising across most of the world and remains a contentious issue that has helped fuel the resurgence of populism in Europe and North America. It has also risen in emerging markets after China, Russia, and India all liberalized their economies, say Gary Greenberg, head of emerging markets; Kunjal Gala, co-portfolio manager, pooled products and segregated mandates; Christopher Clube, an investment analyst; and Jasper Wright, an analyst, all of Hermes; in the article GEMOLOGIST: Inequality: the tension between growth  and social justice in emerging markets at the Benefits and Pensions Monitor website. They examine how the striking extent of inequality in major emerging markets challenges their political stability and growth potential. They also take a look at the conventional wisdom supporting efforts seeking an end to inequality and question whether the pursuit of this ideal should be abandoned in favour of more grounded, pragmatic causes that can improve the lot of many without disrupting society.


How Can Capitalism Help Solve The Climate Change Crisis

Published By: | March 5, 2020

A key question in terms of climate change and global warming is how can capital markets be corrected so that they amplify rather than undermine the ambition within the Paris Agreement, says Steve Waygood, chief responsible investment officer at Aviva Investors. In the article How Capitalism Can Help Solve The Climate Crisis ,’ he says recent years have seen huge progress in the thinking in this area, through work by the UN, World Bank, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the European Union, Financial Stability Board (FSB), and the national governments of the UK, Canada, Norway, China, Singapore, and Malaysia. Yet while these initiatives are welcome, they will be ineffective unless they are part of a more globally co-ordinated strategy and response. This is why establishing an International Panel on Climate Finance (IPCF) could play a vital role, he says.


Celebrating the 10-year Anniversary of TDAM Low Volatility Strategies

Published By: TD Asset Management Inc. | February 18, 2020

The low volatility anomaly had been observed and documented more than 40 years ago, but with the strong equity markets in the 1980s and 19902, few asset managers dared exploit that academic evidence. That changed in 2009 when TD Asset Management launched its first low vol. This year, it marks its 10th year of offering these products.


Navigating the World of High-Cost Drugs With a Focus on Biologics Byline is: The Benefits Alliance Group Advisor’s Forum

Published By: Benefits Alliance | February 10, 2020

Almost 20 years have passed since private drug plans in Canada first experienced claims for high cost biologic drugs. They quickly came to represent a sea-change in both medical practice (due to their effectiveness) and drug plan management (due to their costs). The Benefits Alliance Group invited some of its members to participate in an educational session and roundtable discussion on key issues in drug plan management for high-cost drugs, with a focus on biologics and biosimilars.