Assets managed EUR 19.6 billion, 2015 investment performance 2.3%.
The total assets managed by Austrian Pensionskassen (pension companies) stood at EUR 19.6 billion at the end of the 4th quarter of 2015, representing an increase of 2.5% compared with the previous quarter. The combined amount of assets invested by all the Pensionskassen produced an investment result of 2.2% in Q4 2015, and of 2.3% for the year as a whole. In the last three, five and ten years, the average performance of the Pensionskassen was 5.1%, 4.1% and 2.9% respectively. The total number of beneficiaries rose by 0.9% to approximately 880,000 individuals in comparison with the previous quarter. Around 89,000 (approx. 10%) of those individuals drew a pension from this form of company old-age provision. These findings have emerged from the Report on the Austrian Pensionskassen for the fourth quarter of 2015, which was published today by the Austrian Financial Market Authority (FMA).
Debt securities accounted for the largest share of the portfolio, amounting to 46.7% of total assets at the end of the fourth quarter. Equities made up 29.5%, while balances held at banks accounted for 11.9%. The remainder is in the form of real estate, loans and credits as well as other assets. After having taken currency hedge transactions into account, at the end of 2015 around 17% of the assets were invested in foreign currencies. 95% of the assets of the Pensionskassen are held indirectly via investment funds.
The Austrian Law of Succession is facing the biggest reform for more than 200 years.
In June 2015 the new draft law for the reform of the Austrian inheritance law was being submitted to the National Council.
The legal changes include changes in the testamentary disposition,
such as the lifting of the right of former spouses to be considered as spouse in the meaning and reflected by the last will.
The same applies fort he cancellation of adoption.
Furthermore, it is planned that the cost and time expense for the care of relatives can be charged from
the probate more easily and for a period of three years before the death of the testator.
The legal portion of the parents shall be waived and also former spouses face a weaker position, according to the new draft law. In contrast, unmarried partners may claim a legal portion before any legatees. If businesses are negatively affected by claims f heirs, such claims can be prolonged to the advantage of the best interest of the business.
Furthermore, the newly proposed statute of limitations offer spezial knowledge-based short period of three years and a general knowledge-based period of 30 years and are provided uniformly.
The situation for the German supermarket chain Kaiser's Tengelmann was already tricky: For each day on which the proposed acquisition is delayed by Germany's biggest food group, Edeka, Tengelmann made a six-figure loss and thus aggravated a financially very tense situation.
Germany's economy minister has granted Edeka permission to acquire Tengelmann's Kaiser's chain, subject to various conditions.
Edeka and Tengelmann reached agreement for this transaction in October 2014. It was due to be completed by June 2015, but has been held up by objections from the government, competition watchdog and from competitors like Rewe. The economy minister, Sigmar Gabriel, said Edeka must provide guaranteed jobs for current employees for at least five years, and retain all Kaiser's employees for the next 24 months. Other conditions include completing work on a meat processing plant located in Birkenhof.
The acquisition of this 451-strong chain is another step towards Edeka's main goal of continuously increasing its market share in Germany. It plans to open around 200 stores annually, focusing on central urban areas with a growing population.
After a historic deal was reached in respect of Iran's nuclear program, ending a 12 year stand off, the lifting of the sanctions against Iran have ben implemented on January 16, 2016.
On July 14, 2015, the P5+1 (China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States), the European Union, and Iran reached a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) to ensure that Iran’s nuclear program will be exclusively peaceful. October 18, 2015 marked Adoption Day of the JCPOA, the date on which the JCPOA came into effect and participants began taking steps necessary to implement their JCPOA commitments.
January 16, 2016, marks the Implementation Day of the JCPOA. On this historic day, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has verified that Iran has implemented its key nuclear-related measures described in the JCPOA, and the Secretary State has confirmed the IAEA’s verification. As a result of Iran verifiably meeting its nuclear commitments, the United States is today lifting nuclear-related sanctions on Iran, as described in the JCPOA.
In connection with reaching Implementation Day, today the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) issued several documents, posted on the website, which have become effective on January 16, 2016.
In addition, OFAC has submitted for publication in the Federal Register a final rule adding a general license under the Iranian Transactions and Sanctions Regulations, 31 C.F.R. part 560, relating to the importation into the United States of Iranian-origin carpets and foodstuffs, including pistachios and caviar ; this general license will be effective upon publication in the Federal Register.
OFAC has also published to its website additional information regarding actions to give effect to other JCPOA commitments, including removals from the Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons List, the Foreign Sanctions Evaders List, and/or the Non-SDN Iran Sanctions Act List, as appropriate. In addition, OFAC has made available on its website a list of persons identified as blocked solely pursuant to Executive Order 13599 (“E.O. 13599 List”), which consists of persons that OFAC previously identified as meeting the definition of the Government of Iran or an Iranian financial institution. Information regarding these changes to OFAC’s sanctions lists is available on OFAC’s Recent Actions website. This information will be published subsequently in the Federal Register.
Implementation Day also marks the close of the Joint Plan of Action of November 24, 2013, as extended (JPOA), including the provision of sanctions relief pursuant to the JPOA.
Effective Implementation Day, all specific licenses that: (1) were issued pursuant to OFAC’sSecond Amended Statement of Licensing Policy on Activities Related to the Safety of Iran’s Civil Aviation Industry, and (2) have an expiration date on or before July 14, 2015, are hereby authorized to remain in effect according to their terms until May 31, 2016.
Current and former Deutsche Bank staff have been questioned by the Serious Fraud Office in recent weeks in relation to the investigation into Libor rate-rigging.
Traders have been interviewed about the manipulation of the London interbank offered rate and its euro counterpart.
The interviews come shortly after the conviction of former UBS trader Tom Hayes, who was jailed this month for 14 years after being found guilty of eight charges of conspiracy to defraud.
Deutsche Bank Deutsche Bank was fined £1.6bn earlier this year in settlements with US and UK regulators,
including a £227m penalty levied by the Financial Conduct Authority.
The bank has already fired seven employees over the scandal.
Both the SFO and Deutsche Bank declined to comment on the latest in the Libor investigation.
Deutsche Bank has been forced by a German court to reinstate a Frankfurt employee whom New York regulators had ordered the bank to fire as part of a settlement over alleged interest rate rigging.
The Frankfurt Labour Court told Reuters on Wednesday it ruled in late 2015 that DeutscheBank's dismissal of a Frankfurt-based vice president was invalid and it obligated the German lender to continue to employ the staff member.
The Frankfurt-based vice president and Deutsche Bank declined to comment on the reinstatement.
Deutsche Bank was one of several large European and U.S. banks fined for allegedly failing to stop traders manipulating benchmark interest rate such as Libor, which are used to set prices for trillions of dollars of assets such as home loans.
U.S. and British authorities fined Deutsche Bank $2.5 billion in April 2015, accused Germany's largest lender of obstructing regulators and ordered it to fire seven employees in the biggest global settlement over alleged Libor rigging.
"Certain employees involved in the wrongful conduct remain employed at the bank. The Department orders the bank to take all steps necessary to terminate seven employees, who played a role in the misconduct but who remain employed by the bank," the U.S. Department of Financial Services said in April, 2015.
None was named by the regulator at the time.
New York's banking regulator then, Benjamin Lawsky, ordered Deutsche to take steps to fire a managing director, four directors and a vice president based in London, as well as the vice president based in Frankfurt.
The Department of Financial Services in New York declined to comment on the reinstatement of the Frankfurt-based employee.
As part of the settlement, Deutsche Bank's London-based subsidiary pleaded guilty to criminal wire fraud and the parent group entered into a deferred prosecution agreement to settle U.S. wire fraud and antitrust charges.
Shivani Mathur, who was Deutsche's global head of economic resources based in London, and another of the seven employees Lawsky ordered to be fired, is suing the bank for alleged sex discrimination and unfair dismissal.
"We were ordered to terminate Ms Mathur's employment in connection with a regulatory settlement," a spokesman for Deutsche Bank said this week, declining to comment further.
Mathur's hearing is due to begin on Jan. 21 in a London employment tribunal, according to court records.
A growing number of former bank staff are going to London employment tribunals and claiming they were unfairly fired after investigations into the alleged manipulation of Libor and foreign exchange markets.