​Dutch watchdog: Bundled advice and asset management ups costs

first_imgThe actual survey, conducted by research body SEO Economisch Onderzoek, showed that at the end of 2017, 66 pension funds had opted for both investment advice and asset management from the same provider.The study involved 31 investment advisers. At 21 of them, all pension fund clients also bought asset management services, according to the regulator.The watchdog said it couldn’t explain higher costs based on expensive investments, the managers’ performance or achieved surplus returns.It suggested that purchasing a package of investment advice and asset management could be beneficial for the co-ordination between the adviser and the manager, leading to a tailor-made approach.“To small and medium-sized schemes, this could outweigh higher asset management costs as a consequence of the bundling of services,” it said.The watchdog further found that changing asset managers could increase costs by up to 8.3% in the year of the switch.It suggested that these transfer costs could reduce a scheme’s willingness to change asset managers, and argued that this posed a competition risk at the expense of pension funds and their participants. Pension funds that buy both investment advice and asset management from a single service provider incur approximately 10% in additional costs relative to schemes purchasing the same services from different players, according to Dutch competition watchdog ACM.It said that an exploratory survey into possible distortion of competition between asset managers had found that the additional costs applied especially to small and medium-sized pension funds.The supervisor added that schemes that buy the services from a single player tend to stick longer to such arrangements.ACM drew its conclusions on data of 135 pension funds spanning the period 2012-2017 as well as on interviews with market players and experts.last_img read more

Want a playoff? Take the plunge

first_imgSo, you want a tournament in college football? Well, I got your tournament right here!Instead of arguing who is the best team in the country — or the second-best, as that is the real debate — why not try and figure out who is the worst team in the country? It’s harder than you might think. In fact, it’s so difficult that I think we might have to resort to… a playoff! Gasp!That’s right, it’s the 2006 edition of the Toilet Bowl Championship Series. It should be a doozey this year with some really terrible programs in the running. First though, let’s recap the rules: Each team would be paid and all the games would be televised, or at least drawn comic book-style by an ambitious young artist.The tournament could take place in December, during the downtime between the end of the regular season and the beginning of Bowl Season. The games could be played on high school fields in either Wyoming or Oklahoma, until the championship game, which this year will be moved from the Orange Bowl to the Metrodome. This was done to appease those who threatened lawsuits for polluting the earth by playing these games in an open air stadium.Again, this is only because Veteran’s Stadium was blown up, otherwise that would be the obvious cesspool — uh, facility for the contests.The schools that participate in the eight-team tournament would be decided by the ABCS or the Anything But Championship Series. Winless teams receive automatic bids, while the six power conferences will all send a member (as long as there aren’t too many winless teams). The teams would face off in a single-elimination tournament (losers move on each round) and the last team to lose is dubbed the Toilet Bowl Champion, receiving the Rusty Plunger that is engraved with the mantra, “Better luck next year.”Now, let’s meet this year’s contestants!FIU (0-12, 0-7 Sun Belt)Florida International is the one of two teams assured a berth in the tournament, by virtue of their winless season. The Golden Panthers have been anything but this season. In fact, the Florida Panther is thought by many to possibly be extinct and this team is walking proof of it, as they haven’t been seen in the end zone all year, sporting the nation’s worst scoring offense. How any team from the state of Florida, a recruiting goldmine, could be winless is as confounding as any Rubik’s cube with the stickers mixed up.ACC Representative: Duke (0-12, 0-8)The Mariana Trench of the ACC, Duke probably has reservations about participating in such a tournament. The reason being that since they are currently toting the nation’s longest losing streak (20 games), they are the odds on favorite to, well… lose it all. Plus, the Dukies are also going through withdrawal, as fellow bottom-dweller Baylor, from the Big XII has finally left them and moved on to semi-mediocrity.Big XII Representative: Colorado (2-10, 2-6)The last time Baylor didn’t have the conference cellar locked up and boarded in by November, cement was being called an innovation. The Bad News Buffs, however, stunk up the Big XII enough this season to kick the boys from Waco, Texas (has anything good ever happened there?) out. With Baylor’s luck, a tornado is probably brewing.And kudos to Colorado head coach Dan Hawkins for making the worst career move since Dan Monson (who left Gonzaga for probationed Minnesota), ditching BCS-bound Boise State for the catastrophe capital of college football.Big East Representative: Connecticut (4-8, 1-6)It was a tight battle between UConn and Syracuse for the automatic bid, but when the Mutts fell to the Orange 20-14 in mid-November, their bus tickets were stamped. And we’re not talking about Greyhounds either. No, these pooches will certainly be on the short bus.Big Ten Representative: Michigan State (4-8, 1-7)If you look closely at the Big Ten standings, you’ll notice that it isn’t the Spartans who reside in the conference boiler room, but Illinois (2-10, 1-7). But anybody who has followed college football knows that the MSU “Drag Queens” (dubbed by a friend who called out the mascot Sparty for wearing a skirt) mailed in their application — as well as their season — once they blew an easy win versus Notre Dame.Pac-10 Representative: Stanford (1-11, 1-8)That cardinal shade Stanford is sporting isn’t its school color. No, it’s blood from having been massacred all year, especially the quarterback, as the Cardinal has given up more sacks than anyone in the country. Some it is probably Walt Harris’ too, as he was just axed as head coach. Pee Wee Herman has been brought in as interim sideline stomper for the tourney.SEC Rep: Mississippi State (3-9, 1-7)Usually, Vanderbilt could be counted on to bring up the GPA of the Toilet Bowl, but alas the stray dogs from Starksville managed to steal away the bid. However, even in this playoff there is controversy, as MSU and Vandy never actually played. It leads to cries in Nashville that the system is broken, to which tourney organizers respond “Just the way it should be.”At-Large team: Utah State (1-11, 1-7 WAC)Giving up almost 40 points a game, the Aggies are well-named as they are about as effective as dirt when it comes to playing defense. Utah State allowed opponents to score so much, it is considered criminal outside of Las Vegas.Now that you have met the victims, let’s see how it would all play out, in blurbs custom-made for the ESPN Bottom Line, the perfect place for such lowlights.Round 1:UConn 35, Duke 21 Duke takes an early lead by pretending to be on defense early and letting UConn score for them. But the previously tame Huskies take advantage of the entire Duke team leaving to watch a men’s basketball game at Cameron Indoor Stadium.Mississippi State 28, FIU 0 Vandy, envious of another chance to lose, kidnaps and then impersonates Mississippi State. FIU still fails to score and starts a post-game brawl when a Bulldog calls a “Brass Panther” player a “big meanie” for a violent handshake.Michigan State 43, Utah State 42 Bipolar Michigan State, losing 42-0 at the end of the first quarter, snaps back into a more manic state and sets a new record for largest comeback win, helped by an “impaired” Aggie squad that busted out the victory champagne a little too early.Stanford 15, Colorado 14 Colorado opts for the extra point, instead of attempting a two-point conversion to tie the game, citing that two bowl games are better than one.Round 2:Utah State 6, Duke 0: The Aggies give up a record 927 yards of offense to Duke, but earn the shutout, as the Blue-in-the-face Devils turn the ball over 17 times, 15 of those in the red zone.FIU 9, Colorado 6: This time, the Buffs attempt a two-point conversion for a two-point victory, instead of kicking an extra point for the win, claiming a two-point victory is better than one. The game goes into sextuple-overtime, when FIU is credited with game-winning field goal, after missing by only five yards.Toilet Bowl ChampionshipColorado forfeits to Duke: Ralphie, the CU mascot, refuses to lead the players onto the field prior to the game, citing public humiliation, later legally changing her species to “goat.” Duke rejoices and parties like they were the lacrosse team all the way back to Durham, while Colorado builds a shiny new trophy case for the Rusty Plunger, once again missing the point after.Finally, a playoff system that would work in college football.Dave McGrath is a senior majoring in English and journalism. If you would like to campaign for Temple making the tournament just for tradition’s sake, you can reach him at [email protected]last_img read more