The Secretariat

Buckhurst House

In August of this year the lease on Buckhurst House came up for renewal and I am very pleased to say that the Trustees agreed to the new terms and that the upheaval of another move has been avoided for the foreseeable future.

Alternate Trustees

The last quarter has seen the resignation of Jon Armstrong and John Lorking, two Alternate Trustees appointed by the Association of Participating Bodies. The increasing complexity of pensions’ legislation, as well as the Regulator’s Trustee Knowledge & Understanding requirements may, in the future, make it more difficult to find volunteers to act as trustees, be they alternates or otherwise.

Continuing on the theme of Trustee Knowledge and Understanding, I am pleased to announce that three of our Trustees have successfully completed The Pension Regulator’s e-learning Toolkit.

Scheme Funding Statements

The annual Scheme Funding Statement was sent out to all P.N.P.F. members in September. The details contained therein were not much different from the 2006 Statement and I really cannot envisage too much change in the information until after the 2007 triennial valuation has been finalised.

Triennial Valuation 2007

Although not due until the end of the year the Trustees have already turned their thoughts to the 2007 valuation. For the first time the Trustees will have to determine the assumptions to be used in calculating the valuation results, with advice from the Fund’s Actuary. According to Regulations the assumptions used must be prudent, but unhelpfully they do not go on to define prudence. To assist the Trustees in determining the assumptions the Actuary will be preparing a funding advice report in early 2008.

Change of Address

Research carried out in 2007 shows that since 1996 almost 36% of employees in the private sector failed to notify their pension schemes of their change of address. Locating missing deferred members and pensioners affects most schemes. Which is the reason for this gentle reminder to let us know when you change your address. This is particularly important if you intend to move overseas.

Hedge Funds – A Very Brief History

Hedge funds have received a lot of attention in the press over the last year or two and as you know the Trustees are currently following an investment strategy that diversifies risk and return by investing in alternative assets, ie hedge funds. As hedge funds seemed to have the reputation of being a bit of a chimera I thought I would share with you this brief history of hedge funds that I recently came across.

It may be hard to believe but essentially hedge funds have been around for a number of years and goes back to a well known gentleman by the name of Alfred Winslow Jones. In the late 1940s, Mr. Jones who had been to Harvard and had been a writer at Fortune magazine wanted to offset the risk that was in the market by buying stocks that he liked and finding a means to sell the stocks he did not like. This coined the first phrase of hedge fund. The word “hedge” means to mitigate a possible loss by counterbalancing or offsetting. Over the years it has evolved and various strategies have been developed. But it was in the 1980s and 1990s that it really picked up with ‘specialist managers’ running small unconstrained firms and manufacturing different sources of alpha and beta which is then passed on to the investors.


As you know Quellos is one of the Fund’s fund of hedge fund providers. On 1 October 2007 Quellos was acquired by BlackRock, best known for its acquisition of Merrill Lunch. Whereas Merrill Lynch is best known for its acquisition of Mercury Asset Management (MAMs). Those of you with memories that go as far back as mine will remember that up until January 1998 MAMs was one of our investment managers. A real example of what goes around comes around.


The 2007 Act received Royal Assent on 26 July 2007. It introduces reforms to the state pension system, including proposals to simplify the administration of occupational and personal pension schemes. The changes made by the Act are good news to many, particularly those on low earnings, but also to those people, such as carers, who have no earnings at all.

The general thrust behind the proposals is to ensure that most people receive a suitable level of retirement income by:-

· Improving the level of the basic state pension and at the same time easing the qualifying conditions.

· Making it easier to save for retirement by introducing personal accounts.

· Streamlining the regulatory environment to try and ensure employers retain their occupational pension schemes.

An Overview

The number of years required to qualify for a full Basic State Pension will fall to 30 years for both men and women attaining state pension age after 6 April 2010.

Annual increases to the Basic State Pension will be linked to earnings rather than price inflation.

The State Pension Age will gradually increase between 2024 and 2046 to 68 for both men and women reflecting increased longevity.

Schemes will be allowed to convert Guaranteed Minimum Pensions (GMPs) into scheme benefits so that they can ultimately make savings on benefit administration.

The introduction of a Personal Accounts Delivery Authority which will make preparations for the introduction of Personal Accounts from 2012.

Improvements to the level of payments made under the Government’s Financial Assistance Scheme.

Debbie Marten


May 2007 to July 2007

G. W. Anderson Harwich


J. H. Bryant PLA


M. C. Magill Forth


R. Mountney Lowestoft


G. Rafferty Liverpool


P. Vile Wisbech


P. White Sunderland


Pensioner Deaths

May 2007 to July 2007

G. C. Newman Medway

G. W. Smith London RT

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