09 August 2017
Toronto
Reporter: Jenna Lomax

Canadian pension fund growth spurt continues


Canadian pension plans reported an increase of 1.4 percent during Q2, marking their fifth consecutive quarter of positive returns, according to RBC Investor & Treasury Services (I&TS).

The RBC I&TS All Plan Universe, which currently tracks the performance and asset allocation of over $650 billion in assets under management across Canadian defined benefit, secured gains, despite seeing negative growth some investment lines.

Canadian equities struggled during Q2, with a drop off of -1.9 percent in investments, compared to a 2.3 percent increase in Q1.

Pension fund investments mirrored positive global economics, such as encouraging signs of a stable recovery in Europe and healthy quarterly earnings—one indication was an investment increase of 2.9 percent in Q1 2017 compared to a zero percent increase in Q1 2016.

The RBC I&TS All Plan Universe’s latest data revealed that, after their foray into negative territory in Q4 2016 (-3.4 percent), Canadian fixed income returns consolidated their recovery from the previous quarter, again posting gains of 1.4 percent.

James Rausch, head of client coverage for Canada at RBC I&TS, said: “Despite positive economic indicators of a healthy Canadian economy, depressed energy and commodities were amongst the poorest performing sectors to drag on domestic equities.”

“Nevertheless, Canadian pension fund managers have continued to prudently manage portfolio allocations, remaining underweight in Canadian equities compared to domestic fixed income and global equities and generating yet another positive overall return for the quarter."

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