Investment governance

Real governance needs to be transparent so you can see what action we've taken and why. This should give you and your clients peace of mind that we're looking after their investments.

The Investment Advisory Committee (IAC) meet every quarter to review our Governed Range and funds. Highlights from the most recent meetings can be found below.

Details of previous IAC meetings can be found on the governance meeting updates archive.

29 August 2018 - Governance meeting update

Highlights:

  • There have been 3 tactical changes since the last meeting.
    • In April, we increased the allocation to index linked government bonds, bringing this almost in line with the benchmark; funded by reducing our overweight holding of equities and from cash. With economies continuing to expand and inflation remaining benign, we were overweight global equities, global high yield bonds and commodities.
    • In May, we took further profits on the extra equities purchases made during the market lows and reduced the overweight allocation to commodities. Proceeds of these sales were moved into government bonds and cash.
    • In June, after capitalising on weak markets in the first quarter to increase equity exposures, we took profits on our overweight position as prices recovered, moving the proceeds into cash. There were no changes to the strategic asset allocations.
  • At the end of Q2 we remained positive on stocks but more cautious on government bonds due to ongoing concerns regarding inflation and interest rate increases. Having taken profits from our overweight equity allocations over the quarter we remained moderately overweight global equities and commodities. At the regional equity level, we were overweight US and subsequently overweight Japanese equities which tend to benefit from a strong dollar. As emerging markets have difficulty in servicing dollar-denominated debt when the US currency strengthens, this allocation was moved from overweight to underweight. We maintained underweight positions in Asia Pacific (excluding Japan), UK and continental Europe.
5 June 2018 - Governance meeting update

Highlights:

  • There have been three tactical changes since last quarter.  In January, we added to commodities, funded out of bonds.  We slightly increased the position in high yield bonds. We looked to maintain our overweight position in stocks; a short-term set-back was not ruled out and we would use such an opportunity to increase our equity allocation.  In February, we added to our moderate overweight position in equities on market weakness, buying stocks in the emerging markets in particular, and deepening the underweight in government bonds. We also took this opportunity to move commodities further overweight.  In March, we added to equities again, capitalising on stock market weakness and given that supportive world growth conditions remain in place. We also increased the allocation to index linked bonds and conventional UK gilts. The changes were funded out of high yield debt, government bonds, property and cash.  There were no changes to the strategic asset allocation.
  • Overweight positioning in equities was maintained in Q1; market volatility gave our multi asset funds the opportunity to add significantly to equities at more attractive prices. Underweight positioning in government bonds was sustained through the quarter as the interest rate outlook grew slightly less benign.
  • We are modestly overweight equities, commodities and short duration high yield bonds in our multi asset funds, but underweight government bonds given more evidence to be concerned about inflation and interest rate increases than in the last few years.  We maintain an overweight position in Japan, a global growth beneficiary, a neutral position in European and US equities, and stay underweight UK equities while Brexit uncertainty remains.
1 March 2018 - Governance meeting update
  • There have been two tactical changes since the last meeting. The change in January added to commodities and marginally to high yield bonds, reducing our exposure to bonds and cash. In February, we increased our positions in equities and commodities largely out of bonds where available, property otherwise. We also deepened our underweight position in fixed income in favour of cash. There were no changes to the strategic asset allocations.
  • Overweight positioning in equities was maintained in Q4 against a backdrop of accelerating global growth indicators and relatively subdued inflation data releases. Underweight positioning in fixed income through the quarter was increased marginally in November as the interest rate outlook grew slightly less benign.
  • Given longer term positive economic fundamentals and with interest rates not expected to rise sharply in the next year at least, we remain ready to buy stocks on dips in the market.
1 December 2017- Governance meeting update
  • There have been three tactical asset allocation changes since the last IAC meeting in August. Strategic Asset Allocation changes were made to the GRIPs in October and the new risk metrics implemented. No Strategic Asset Allocation changes were recommended for the Governed Portfolios.
  • There are signs that growth is picking up, against a backdrop of loose monetary policy and low inflation. Against such a backdrop, central banks are unlikely to tighten in a meaningful way; this is positive for stocks and high yield, where we remain overweight. With seasonality now positive, we are likely to buy dips in stock markets rather than sell rallies. We’ve marginally increased our underweight in bonds and taken some profits in high yield. We have added to commodities at the margin.
Last updated: 02 Oct 2018

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The Royal London Mutual Insurance Society Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. The firm is on the Financial Services Register, registration number 117672. It provides life assurance and pensions. Registered in England and Wales number 99064. Registered office: 55 Gracechurch Street, London, EC3V 0RL.