Load remaining images Last night, Brooklyn Bowl hosted a great tribute to honor the songs of poet and Grateful Dead lyricist, John Perry Barlow. The event featured Grahame Lesh, Ross James, Alex Koford, and Scott Padden, aka the Terrapin Family Band, alongside an all-star cast of special guests. Eric Krasno and Jackie Greene both added their unique guitar playing to the occasion, with Jon Graboff of Ryan Adams & The Cardinals, Karina Rykman of Marco Benevento Band, Katie Jacoby, Rob Barraco of Dark Star Orchestra, Leslie Mendelson, and more.HeadCount and D’Angelico Guitars teamed up to auction off an exclusive guitar signed by Bob Weir and John Perry Barlow. The auction and show were designed to raise money for the John Perry Barlow Wellness Trust to aid the longtime Grateful Dead lyricist in his current medical battle. In case you weren’t able to make the event, you can also donate here. Check out the full gallery below, courtesy of Andrew Scott Blackstein Photography.
Charles CounsellCharles Counsell, chief executive officer of TPR, said: “We have taken bold action now to ensure that the market develops in the best interests of savers, particularly as the impact of the COVID-19 crisis may prompt some sponsoring employers and pension trustees to consider what they can do to meet defined benefit pension promises in the future.”‘High bar’TPR said its regime was tough, setting a “high bar” for superfunds to meet. It also said its guidance was not prescriptive, but “clear and directive”, and for superfunds as well as other new models.Under the superfund model, there is no employer covenant, so capital adequacy is one of the most important areas of the regulator’s interim regime.The PLSA expressed its full support for the guidance, noting protections such as strong capital buffers and a requirement to have a 99% certainty of being funded at levels set by the regulator.The guidance also sets out restrictions on profit-taking and guidance on investments, which the PLSA said were designed to ensure superfunds avoided over-concentrated portfolios and high risk assets.Joe Dabrowski, head of DB, LGPS and standards at the PLSA, said: “The regulator has clearly given a great deal of thought to create an appropriate and affordable supervisory regime, which protects members and the PPF.”“This will lead to considerable creativity in tackling the long-term funding challenges of Britain’s DB pension schemes”Gordon Watchorn, head of corporate consulting at LCPGordon Watchorn, head of corporate consulting at LCP, said publication of the new framework was “an extremely welcome step and will lead to considerable creativity in tackling the long-term funding challenges of Britain’s DB pension schemes”.The regulator has said trustees should only consider using a superfund or a new business model once TPR had completed its assessment, and that the regulator would be providing more information for schemes and employers in the coming months.Two consolidators have been actively marketing themselves, Clara Pensions and the Pensions SuperFund, and have said that they have deals in the pipeline. Clara today said TPR’s guidance “put it firmly on the path to regulatory approval and, once received, its first transactions”. Rush of deals?Matt Cooper, head of DB consolidation in the pensions team at PwC, said PwC understood there were “significant pipelines”, and that “we could see several billion of pension liabilities transferred in the next 18 months, assuming the economics implied by the regulatory requirements can be supported by providers’ business models”. Adolfo Aponte, managing director at Lincoln Pensions, said the covenant adviser expected TPR’s guidance “to open the flood gates on the sale of the employer covenant links in exchange for a defined pot of capital, which could be transformational in the way that benefits are secured and how they are delivered to members”.“As with any innovation however, there is ample room for unintended consequences and the emerging regulatory regime should ensure members are not left wearing the innovation risk.”The Association of Consulting Actuaries (ACA) said the greater clarity and certainty on new commercial consolidation options would be of particular interest to schemes that could not afford to buy-out with an insurance company in the near future and “where the security of members’ pensions had been put at risk because of the recent COVID-19 business downturn”.However, ACA chair Patrick Bloomfield said the association did not expect a rush of deals to be signed straight away.“We support TPR’s intention to scrutinise each deal individually, checking that it is in the interests of pension scheme members.”Charles Ward, a professional trustee at Dalriada Trustees, said a superfund was likely to be appropriate for a narrow range of schemes.This was because of a ban on transfers from schemes able to buy-out via an insurance company or on course to do so within the foreseeable future, “and the difficulty that weaker employers will have in finding collateral to contribute to their scheme, even if this is less than the buyout deficit”.One of the aspects of the regime noted by experts is that it would not allow consolidators to extract profits in the first three years unless schemes were wound-up.Lesley Carline, president of the Pensions Management Institute, expressed concern that TPR might be creating a regulatory culture disincentivising the creation of consolidators.“Consolidators should be able to remunerate investors without undue regulatory restriction if the superfund concept is to succeed,” she said. “We believe this aspect of today’s announcement requires further clarification.“Apart from this, we are excited that scheme consolidation can finally proceed and see this as a positive development for the members of legacy DB schemes.”Superfunds à la TPR guidanceAccording to TPR, a superfund is a model that allows for the severance of an employer’s liability towards a DB scheme where one of the following conditions applies: The scheme employer is replaced by a special purpose vehicle employer. “This is, to all intents and purposes, a shell employer and is usually put in place to preserve the scheme’s PPF eligibility,” said TPRThe liability of the employer to fund the scheme’s liabilities is replaced by an employer backed with a capital injection to a capital buffer The replacement employer backed by a capital buffer will usually support a consolidator scheme, with important features such as:a bulk transfer of a ceding scheme’s liabilities to a consolidator scheme, which is prepared to accept the liabilities of a number of schemes from unconnected ceding employersits own governance and administration (these functions may be in-house, or outsourced)(usually) one trustee board “I look forward to learning from the experiences from the interim regime, which will provide valuable insights as we develop and finalise our plans for a longer term legislative solution.”Superfunds, which allow for the severance of an employer’s liability towards a DB scheme, were a recommendation of a Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA) taskforce and the subject of consultation by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) in 2018.TPR published a first set of guidance in this area that year, but there has been what former pensions minister Steve Webb described as a “regulatory stalemate” on the issue of DB consolidators since then, the main stumbling block being concerns about unfair competition for the insurance industry.The effects of the coronavirus have added to anticipation in the pension industry of a greater regulatory clarity being provided about DB consolidators. To read the digital edition of IPE’s latest magazine click here. The UK pensions regulator has today set out guidance for how emerging so-called defined benefit (DB) “superfunds” should run, a move seen as opening the door for a market in new consolidation options for struggling company DB schemes.The regulatory regime is interim, bridging the period until such time as the government has legislated for a permanent framework, which it today said it was working towards.The pensions regulator (TPR) said it acted ahead of this to ensure clear rules were in place while DB superfunds and other new consolidation models emerged.Pensions minister Guy Opperman said: “The publication of today’s interim regime for DB superfunds is a big step towards a healthier and stronger pensions landscape.
With the donation of 5 000 BAM, the Embassy of Germany supports the school of handball “Željo” in Sarajevo.The handball school “Željo” will receive sports equipment such as balls, jersey and other sports clothes. Apart from this, an additional jersey will be given to the coach, as the representative of the school. After the handover of the donation, there exists a possibility of having a joint photography with the athletes and representatives of the Embassy.The donation will be handed over today at 18:00 in the sports centre Skenderija.