first_imgThe new IORP II Directive will increase costs in the second pillar in Germany despite not containing further capital requirements, according to Mark Walddörfer, board member at the Düsseldorf-based pensions consultancy Longial.Under the revised directive for pension funds in Europe, heads of retirement provision in companies will no longer be allowed –apart from a few exceptions – to run the company’s pension fund.“But in Germany, this is a common arrangement that ensures cost efficiency,” Walddörfer said, adding that it would be “important” for Germany to keep these arrangements intact.Further, he warned that the increased requirements respecting information for members and data for supervisors would increase costs in the second pillar and were “not necessarily adding value”. He quoted a survey by the German federation of company pension funds, the VFPK, which estimates an increase in administration costs of one-third.His major criticism regarding the IORP II is, however, the definition of pension funds as ‘financial service providers’.“In fact, they are social institutions created by employers not comparable to life insurers despite being regulated within a similar legal framework out of practical reasons,” Walddörfer said.While this was only a question of wording at the moment, the actuary warned that it might lead to problems in 2018 at the planned revision of the IORP II.“The danger is that capital requirements similar to those in Solvency II will then be included into the directive based on this definition – therefore we should try and change it now,” he said.Walddörfer said he was convinced that a copy of Solvency II-like capital requirements for IORP would “kill them immediately”.He also sees a danger of Solvency II being “introduced via the back door” with articles 29 and 30 on risk evaluation.“In the worst case, pension funds will have to assess risks with marked-to-market parameters,” he said.The Longial board member thinks German supervisor BaFin may introduce new risk parameters on top of those existing for IORP, and that EIOPA might want a say in those assessments.“And the most important question remains, why investors with a long-term investment horizon should use any short-term marked-to-market criteria for assessing their funding status?” Walddörfer said.He advised pension funds to “wait before implementing any of the IORP II requirements”, as changes were still possible.All in all, he thinks IORP II requirements will “weaken” German pension funds and asked whether this was “going in the right direction”.However, he pointed out that Pensionskassen were basically “on their way out” anyway, as few new pension schemes have been set up under this legal framework in recent years.“A Pensionsfonds is much more flexible, both in investments as well as managing liabilities, as it can be underfunded for a limited time and apply a higher discount rate,” he said. ”Therefore, this segment will continue to grow.”last_img read more


first_imgCHC Group, a helicopter services provider, has been awarded an extension by Equinor for both the Tampen/Oseberg and Heidrun contract in Norway. The extension is for one year and it is effective from September 2020 to August 2021. “We are delighted that we continue to enjoy Equinor’s confidence in our ability to not only execute their service safely but also with outstanding efficiency and levels of customer service”, said Per Andre Rykhus, General Operations Manager, CHC Helikopter Services Norway. This is for three Sikorsky S-92 SAR aircraft and three super puma A332L/L1. The contract offers the opportunity for further extensions. The aircraft are located at the Johan Sverdrup, Oseberg, Statfjord B, and Heidrun platforms and cover the area expanding from the Northern North Sea into the Norwegian Sea. “We will continue to evolve our services and embrace the latest technology to best meet customer needs, building on our decades of experience in Norwegian oil and gas activity”.last_img read more


first_imgMASON CITY — It’s over five years behind bars for a Davenport man who pleaded guilty to leading authorities on a high-speed chase on the Avenue of the Saints near Mason City back in January. The Iowa State Patrol says shortly after 4:00 AM on the morning of January 27th a trooper attempted to stop 38-year-old Travis Coleman for speeding on the Avenue of the Saints south of Mason City. During the pursuit, the vehicle reached a high speed of 130 miles per hour. Coleman exited at the Mallard Avenue exit, made a bad pass on the shoulder, crossed the road and a struck a DOT barrier. Coleman attempted to keep driving but the trooper intentionally struck the vehicle to stop the pursuit. A bag of  marijuana was allegedly found in the front passenger seat. Coleman pleaded guilty to felony eluding, first-offense OWI and first-offense possession of marijuana. He was sentenced this week by Judge Karen Salic to five years in prison on the eluding charge and 30 days in jail on the OWI and drug charges. He was also fined a total of $2000.last_img read more