Pension Funds

The World's Largest Pension Funds

The Biggest Funds by Assets Under Management (AUM)

The World's 1000 largest pension funds between them have assets under management (AUM) exceeding $15trn. To rank in the top 20 biggest funds requires a size of over $100bn in AUM.

The Savvy Investor research team has curated below some of the best research, which lists the top funds, and examines their investment strategies. Register today for immediate access to our research library of over 12,000 white papers. It's entirely free!

Pensions Page Savvy Investor World's largest pension fundsThe world's 300 largest pension funds - year ended 2015 (Willis Towers Watson, 2016)
This comprehensive paper by Willis Towers Watson provides invaluable insights into the financial state of the largest 300 pension funds in the world. 

Top 1000 European Pension Funds
This document by IPE provides a very useful list of Europe's top 1000 (by assets under management, AUM) pension funds. The top five funds originate from Norway, the Netherlands, Denmark and Sweden.

From Big to Great: The world's leading institutional investors forge ahead (McKinsey, 2016)
The world's top-tier of institutional investors has evolved into a heavyweight grouping with trillions of dollars under management, growing quickly and expanding globally, with increasingly complex internal structures. This new report from McKinsey, based on in-depth interviews with senior executives, examines the future plans of these organizations, revealing a significant rethink of asset allocation and portfolio construction processes. It reveals how the world’s largest institutional investors plan to grow their capabilities and performance over the coming years.

Survey of Large Pension Funds and Public Pension Reserve Funds Long-Term Investments (OECD, 2016)
This comprehensive 56-page report by the OECD provides interesting insights into the performance and investment behaviours of the world's biggest institutional investors, examining in depth the trends observed at a national and regional level.

Mercer Global Pension Buyout Index 2016
This index examines trends in the pricing of bulk pension annuity transactions in the UK, US, Canada, Ireland, the Netherlands and Germany. Increasingly, pension risk transfer transactions involve an international element. Pricing is subject to domestic requirements for insurer reserving and international financial markets.

UBS Asset Management - Pension Fund Indicators 2016
This annual publication aims to put current pensions-related topics into their long-term context. It is a useful source of data and has practical explanations on industry trends.

The Coming Pensions Crisis (Citi, 2016)
In this report, Citi examines the scale of the global pensions problem, and recommends a number of solutions. In particular, the authors identify the opportunities that this situation creates for corporate plan sponsors, asset managers and insurers.

UK Pensions - Milking & Dumping: The Devices Businesses use to and Shed Deficits in Their Pension Schemes and Exploit Surpluses (2016)
This paper gives examples of UK DB schemes suffering losses in the 1980s and early 1990s, mostly by fraudulent practices. It sketches briefly the changing legal bases over employers’ contributions and funding obligations.

Reducing Pension Risk: Five Myths Holding Back U.S. Plan Sponsors (Prudential, 2016)
Many companies have decided to reduce pension benefits as a result of the increasing cost of DB plan maintenance. In spite of greater knowledge of risk management alternatives, the market has not yet to seen large organisations devise de-risking strategies, particularly risk transfer solutions. While a number of plan sponsors are currently examining their de-risking alternatives, a gap very clearly exists between the plans and actions of some companies with regard to defined benefit risk reduction.

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