Thanks to investment pooling, medium-sized companies in particular benefit from a considerable rise in efficiency and lower costs with this semi-autonomous concept. For years, Group Invest has proven that security and attractive average interest rates are also possible during periods of considerable market price fluctuations. The financial risks of death and disability are borne by AXA.
What are the advantages of Group Invest?
Pooled investments with optimized earnings and risk
The pension assets of all affiliated companies are invested and managed on the basis of a uniform investment strategy by the collective foundation, together with Credit Suisse and AXA. Based on positive developments in the financial markets, a performance-oriented investment concept generates long-term returns that exceed the statutory minimum interest rate.
The Board of Trustees of the collective foundation sets the interest rate for the retirement assets in accordance with the interest model. This is based on the expected coverage ratio at the end of the year. The savings contributions and interest determine how the retirement assets develop.
Capital markets, and equity markets especially, are regularly subject to fluctuations. Experience has shown that – precisely in such turbulent times – it is best to keep a calm head and avoid hasty reactions. It is much more important to keep a clear view of the long-term investment strategy, ensuring a balance between the Foundation’s pension liabilities and investments at all times.
In the semi-autonomous pension model, a certain temporary underfunding is possible without there being any need to take immediate remedial action. This offers considerably more flexibility for dealing with fluctuations in the capital market. It is only when the underfunding is relevant and protracted that restructuring measures have to be considered.
Underfunding as defined in Art. 44 BVV 2/OPO 2 is deemed to apply when the coverage rate determined in accordance with BVV 2/OPO 2 is below 100% as at the respective reference date. Where underfunding is minimal, it can be assumed that – with a sound investment strategy well matched to the occupational benefits institution’s capacity for risk when it was put in place – a coverage rate of over 100% will be restored over the medium term.
We are keeping a close eye on the situation and supporting the Board of Trustees in its key decision-making processes.
It is important to us that you and your employees are able to maintain your usual standard of living into your old age despite the challenges in the capital markets. To achieve this goal, the Board of Trustees has decided to adapt the investment strategy from January 1, 2021. Two substrategies – "mandatory" and "extra-mandatory" – forming the basis of the new interest model have been defined. The interest model now makes a stronger distinction between "mandatory" and "extra-mandatory," with the result that extra-mandatory retirement assets will generally be able to earn higher interest than was formerly the case. The potential for a superior rate of interest is thus increased, meaning that insured members can expect higher retirement benefits.
The change in the investment strategy from January 1, 2021, will provide the following advantages:
“With two different investment strategies, we offer our customers security coupled with the prospects of higher interest. This makes it possible for us to allow you to maintain your standard of living in your retirement.”
The Columna Collective Foundation Group Invest, Winterthur, was established on March 15, 1984. Its purpose is to manage the occupational old-age, survivors’ and disability benefits insurance of its affiliated companies. As well as providing mandatory occupational benefits insurance, it also offers pension plans that exceed the minimum requirements of the law.
Management of investments
Protection of pension benefits
Administration and management
The Board of Trustees of the Columna Collective Foundation Group Invest is composed of the following members: