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08:30 - 08:55: Registration and refreshments

08:55 – 09.00: Chairman’s welcome
Roger Cobley, Chairman, Stamford Associates

09:00 – 9.25: Keynote Speaker
Alex Cunningham, Shadow Pensions Minister, Member of Parliament

Shadow Pensions Minister Alex Cunningham will offer his thoughts on some of the key issues in UK pensions today, to include transparency in the industry, the future of auto-enrolment, collective DB/DC and more

09.25 – 9.50: The future of fiduciary management
Sion Cole, Senior Partner, Aon
Fiduciary management has now been around over a decade in the UK and has high levels of satisfaction across the industry. This session will look at the key drivers of the increasing take-up we are seeing and how it has evolved during this time; in terms of the solution, flexibility and transparency. Looking ahead, what is the future for fiduciary management? Aon will outline how it sees things changing further and the impact this may have on the wider pensions and investment industry.

9.50 – 10.15: Making long-term saving personal 
Christopher Paul, Group Product Director, Aquila Heywood
Chris explores the combined use of big data and profiling to segment the population and deliver a more personalised approach to engagement based on individual’s personal circumstances and their preferred communication channel. The result: improved service, lower cost products, increased transparency, and maximum value for the consumer.
Click here for presentation. 

10.15 – 10.40: Integrated risk management
Chris Ramsey, Associate and Scheme Actuary, Barnett Waddingham
Using insight from their integrated risk management research, Barnet Waddingham explores the most effective way of using risk management techniques to produce better outcomes for DB pensions schemes as well as giving practical risk management solutions for trustees.
Click here for presentation. 

10.40 – 11.05: The future of pension scheme investing and the impact on the “gilts plus” valuation approach 
Ben Gold, Head of Investment Consulting, North, Xafinity plc

Cash flow matching is how insurers have been investing to meet their cash outflows in a highly risk controlled way for a very long time. It is an investment approach that will become mainstream for pension schemes in the coming years. This is because it is relevant for all schemes with an increasing demand for cash and an appetite to de-risk. In addition, the right approach to scheme funding is a very important consideration if a cash flow matching strategy is adopted. The typical “gilts plus” approach is no longer optimal. Ben Gold, Head of Pension Investment – North at Xafinity will explain what cash flow matching is and why it’s relevant. He’ll then use this as an example of why schemes and their advisors should spend more time and thought on the right approach to scheme funding. This is vital to ensure schemes have a clear plan to manage risk, and that it is integrated and appropriate.
Click here for presentation. 

11.05 – 11.25: Coffee Break

11.25 – 11.50: Finding value in an uncertain world
Ritu Vohora, Investment Director, M&G Investments
After several decades of political and economic stability, we face a more uncertain world. Markets have given investors a volatile ride over recent years and across the generations, investors are facing the same challenge of trying to save for retirement in a low return market environment. As we move through the second half of 2017, there is something askew. Should stocks and bonds be rising at the same time? And which market is foreshadowing the true outlook for the global economy? Ritu will explore the key challenges in the current market environment and highlight some attractive pockets of opportunity that are available for investors today. In an uncertain world, does fortune favour the active?
Click here for presentation. 

11.50 – 12.15: The Income Balancing Act – Ideas for Delivering Income
Michael Walsh, Senior Investment Strategist, Investment Solutions, UBS
Striking the balance in paying benefits to members, achieving growth and managing liability risks presents Trustees with both investment and governance challenges. With an increasing proportion of members drawing on their accrued benefits and low yields on bonds and cash, a scheme’s ability to meet their near term cash flow commitments can be severely challenged. Today, we will look at some investment options schemes can adopt to meet their cash flow needs. These can help Trustees to implement a structured approach for meeting short term challenges whilst still achieving those necessary long term returns.
Click here for presentation. 

12.15 – 12.40: Educate and engage - pension communications masterclass
Lou Harris, Head of Client Communications, Capita Employee Benefits

How do employees want to be communicated with? What support and guidance do employees now expect from their employer? How are pension schemes meeting the expectations of their members? Hear about the key findings from Capita’s latest Educate & Engage Research and Report 2017 and learn from industry case studies about how award-winning communications programmes are addressing education and engagement challenges, from social media and interactive video to gamification and avatar builders.
Highlights: What a fully integrated educate and engagement programme looks like; Case study results; Insights from research; Attitudes towards the standard of communications employers are providing; The importance of guidance; Financial education - in demand, in need; How employees want to be benchmarked against their peers; Financial wellbeing of employees and factors that could affect their decision-making process
Click here for presentation. 

12.40 – 13.05: Seeking Alpha in a Low Return World
David Greene, Client Portfolio Manager, Amundi Asset Management
Over the last ten years, financial markets have delivered strong returns. Looking ahead, with equity markets fully valued and bonds yields still close to historic lows, institutional investors are unlikely to enjoy the level of returns achieved over the past decade. David Greene will discuss what investors should realistically expect from future asset returns and consider how alpha can best be obtained in this environment.

13.05 – 14.00: Lunch

14.00 – 14.25: Black Box Thinking for Pension Funds
Phil Redding, UK Head of Business Development, Cardano
The DB industry is now in crisis, with 1,000 pension funds likely to enter the PPF. There are calls for reform and the government are consulting on what, if anything, should be done. In this session, Phil Redding will give a candid perspective on what has gone wrong and what needs to change. Yes, regulatory and legislative reform is necessary, but even without it, there are simple, practical steps that most trustees can take to dramatically improve their chances of successfully paying their members the benefits that have been promised. This provocative and stimulating session will provide an excellent introduction to other topics discussed at the conference.
Click here for presentation. 

14.25 – 14.50: How should you manage credit risk 10 years on from Northern Rock?
Paul Skinner, Managing Director and Investment Director, Product Management, Wellington Management

At the end of August 2007, investment-grade credit yielded over 5%. Two weeks later, a run on Northern Rock signalled the start of the global financial crisis in the UK, triggering an unprecedented policy response that has driven markets in the decade since. Investment-grade credit now yields just over 2%. As policymakers look to reverse course, what are the risks facing fixed income investors and how should they be managed.

14.50 – 15.15: Pensions: value and quality in an ever-changing landscape
Paul Todd
, Director of investment Development and Delivery, NEST

We know what pension savers want – security, safety and certainty. But how can investors deliver that when there are no guarantees and they are operating in an uncertain world? Join NEST’s director of investment development and delivery, Paul Todd, to discover how NEST’s investment approach seeks to deliver a smooth savings journey in an ever changing geo-political environment.
Click here for presentation. 

15.15 – 15.40: DC – Gauging True Value for Money
Karen Watkin, Portfolio Manager—Multi-Asset Solution, AllianceBernsein

What do Trustees need to think about when assessing whether their Default investment strategy offers Value for Money? Measuring the value of final member outcomes rather than having a myopic focus purely on costs is clearly the requirement. We look at how a transparent and measurable framework can be implemented by trustees and governance committees to measure whether value for money has been delivered historically and equally importantly whether it will continue to do so in the future. We also pose the question of whether a better outcome could be achieved for members if more was spent on investment and look at what challenges stand in the way of this.

15.40 – 16.05: Keynote Speaker
Fiona Frobisher, Head of Policy, The Pensions Regulator
Fiona Frobisher will reflect on some of the top priorities for The Pensions Regulator today
Click here for presentation. 

16.05: Chairman’s round-up, close of conference, i-pad draw and distribution of M&S vouchers followed by Drinks Reception