9SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr CUES member Ronaldo Hardy, CEO of $30 million/3,200-member Shell Geismar Federal Credit Union, Geismar, La., and his management team were acutely aware of the changes the credit union needed to make to excel in the current financial environment and to attract and retain members, especially millennials.Branch traffic had been waning as members adopted new ways of conducting financial transactions, and the credit union needed to serve those members’ needs or risk losing them. Because not everyone can get to the branches when they are open, online and mobile applications were becoming the choice of more and more members, including millennials, who are a key demographic for the credit union.CUnify, a real-time account processing system with integrated digital solutions, proved the right combination because it makes web banking easy for members and offers responses in less time than ever. The credit union cited the member-centric relational database and automated processing as major factors in its selection of CUnify. continue reading »
The coverage ratio of Dutch pension funds increased by at least eight percentage points on average last year, in particular thanks to improving equity markets, according to Mercer and Aon Hewitt.Mercer saw the schemes’ funding rise by one percentage point to 107% on average during December. Aon Hewitt, which applies slightly different criteria, found that coverage had last month remained unchanged, at 106%.Aon noted that the funding level at the end of 2017 exceeded the required minimum of 104.3% and said it expected that only a few pension funds had closed the year with a funding shortfall.This compares favourably with the situation at the end of 2016. Then, coverage of Dutch pension funds was 98% on average, after funding had just jumped thanks to improving equity markets and rising interest rates in the wake of the election of Donald Trump as US president. At the time, it was expected that no more than 10 pension funds would have to start cutting pension rights in 2017.As schemes are allowed to spread out necessary discounts, cuts were expected to be limited to a maximum of 1% last year.Commenting on 2017, Mercer said that worldwide developed market equities had risen 0.7% without a 50% currency hedge in December, and 1% in case schemes had applied such a hedge. It added that equities in emerging markets had gained 2.9%.The rise in the swap rate hardly contributed to a drop in liabilities, as the ultimate forward rate fell from 2.9% to 2.6% last yearAon HewittListed property and commodities yielded 0.8% and 2.3%, respectively, last month, while euro-denominated government bonds and credit had lost 0.8% and 0.3%, respectively, according to Mercer.Aon indicated that equity investments without currency hedging had generated 10% over last year.It said the US dollar had depreciated 14% relative to the euro.Property portfolios lost more than 2% on average last year, according to Aon, which added that fixed income portfolios had remained largely at the same level.During December, the 30-year swap rate – the main criterion for discounting pension funds’ liabilities – dropped marginally to 1.50%. At the end of 2016, the rate stood at 1.23%.Aon Hewitt noted that the rise of the swap rate had hardly contributed to a drop in liabilities, as the ultimate forward rate (UFR) had fallen from 2.9% to 2.6% last year. The UFR is part of the discount mechanism for Dutch pension funds’ liabilities. “As a result of this reduction, pension funds must apply higher liabilities for long durations, which has cancelled out the effect of decreased liabilities for the short durations,” the consultancy said.The UFR allows pension funds to apply higher interest rates than the market rate for long-term liabilities. However, the difference between the market rate and the UFR has decreased significantly.Mercer noted that pension funds’ liabilities had risen 0.1% on balance last month, following an increase in short-term interest rates and a slight drop in long-term rates.Edward Krijgsman, senior investment consultant at Mercer, explained that pension funds’ liabilities are more susceptible to long-term interest rates, whereas regular government bonds and credit are more affected by short-term rate developments.
Transfers Tarkowski ends Arsenal and Man City transfer talk by penning new Burnley deal Jamie Smith 23:48 1/4/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Getty Images Transfers Arsenal Burnley Premier League Manchester City After being linked with a big-money move during the winter transfer window, the Clarets have tied their in-form defender down to a long-term contract James Tarkowski has signed a new contract at Burnley, committing his future with the Premier League surprise package until 2022.Tarkowski has excelled having stepped into the team to replace Michael Keane after the England international signed for Everton last July, starting 19 Premier League games.The 25-year-old was ever-present for the Clarets – leading to speculation he could receive a maiden England call-up – before receiving a retrospective three-game ban for an elbow on Brighton striker Glenn Murray. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player With Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal having all been linked with the former Brentford defender, Burnley have moved to tie him down to a new long-term deal.BREAKING: @Tarky19 signs new long-term deal at Burnley. Full story to follow. pic.twitter.com/7jLNF4B5Lw— Burnley FC (@BurnleyOfficial) January 4, 2018″I’m happy. It’s been a good season so far and it’s nice to be rewarded by the gaffer and the club in this way,” Tarkowski told Burnley’s official website.”Hopefully I can carry on paying them back and put in some good performances.”Since Keano left, the club has put the trust in me, so far, to take that position on. I feel like I’ve done quite well so far and hopefully long may that continue.”I have said it for a long time, this is a long-term project for me and the club so hopefully we can all continue what’s been a positive season so far.”SD: “We felt it appropriate to offer James a new deal on two levels. He’s done well in the Premier League and secondly his contract was out of sync. And there’s a few more we are talking to.”— Burnley FC (@BurnleyOfficial) January 4, 2018Burnley boss Sean Dyche confirmed in a news conference on Thursday that Canada international Scott Arfield will not be available for Saturday’s FA Cup clash with runaway Premier League leaders Manchester City due to injury.Dyche, who will rotate his high-flying side for the trip to the Etihad Stadium, added that contract talks are ongoing with a number of Burnley players.”I mentioned recently we have a good collection of players, ones we enjoy working with, and they are under good contracts,” Dyche said. “Tarky was, but we felt it appropriate.”There’s another couple we are talking to already. We try to work on a level of fairness and making sure players are on appropriate contracts at the right time. Tarky fits into that really.”