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Principal Global Investors Names Pat Halter as CEO

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Patrick (Pat) G. Halter took the CEO’s mantle at Principal Global Investors, which is part of Des Moines-based Principal Financial Group Inc. Halter is replacing James (Jim) McCaughan who stepped down as CEO of Principal Global Investors. McCaughan has been with the firm for almost 17 years. In addition, Timothy M. Dunbar was promoted to President of Principal Global Investors.

Previously, Halter was Chief Operating Officer at Principal Global Investors and CEO of Principal Real Estate Investors. Halter had led the real estate business since 2003 and joined Principal back in 1984.

Dunbar was previously Executive Vice President and Chief Investment Officer of the organization.

Flows have been choppy with Principal Global Investors over the past years. Principal Financial Group has around US$ 666.6 billion in assets under management. Principal Financial Group’s Principal Global Investors segment generated US$ 115.4 million in pre-tax operating earnings for the second quarter of 2017, while the second quarter of 2018 generated US$ 127 million.

Big Mandate Redeemed

On August 3, 2018, Principal Global Investors revealed a large single client with a US$ 9 billion real estate mandate redeemed. The client decided to take the portfolio in-house as the manager contract was up. Principal Global Investors had an arrangement that went on for about 20 years with the client.

Assets Under Management by Division and Select Units – USD Billions

Period Principal Global Investors AUM Principal Global Fixed Income Principal Real Estate – Private Real Estate Columbus Circle Investors Finisterre Capital
Jun 2018 429.8 102.1 58.8 5.0 2.2
Mar 2018 423.8 102.2 53.9 5.1 2.2
Dec 2017 430.9 96.4 52.9 5.6 2.7
Sep 2017 423.3 96.8 52.0 5.9 2.7
Jun 2017 410.4 95.0 52.8 6.5 3.0

Cryptocurrencies Creep into the Middle East

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Banking behemoth J.P. Morgan Chase disclosed its own digital currency called JPM Coin. The digital token will be used to settle payments between clients. JPM Coin will be backed by physical U.S. dollars and be based off Quorum. Quorum is J.P. Morgan’s private Ethereum-based chain. JPM Coin plans to compete with Ripple, which created XRP, another digital currency that is used for settlements. Ripple’s main target market is cross-border payments and remittances.

The Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates and the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority have unveiled their plans for Aber, an interbank digital currency. Both banks have indicated that Aber will be limited to financial settlements using distributed ledger technologies. It will be rolled out on a probational basis, and used by select banks within the two countries. A date for rollout has not yet been declared. A joint statement hinted at a broader application of the currency in the days ahead. If “no technical obstacles are encountered, economic and legal requirements for future uses will be considered.”‏ Blockchains and Distributed Ledgers technologies will be employed. The plan is for ‘Proof-of-Concept’ testing, which involves studying and fully comprehending the ways modern technologies can achieve practical applications. The digital currency has the potential to become a reserve system for central payments.

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CPPIB Inks Partnership Vehicle with La Française and its Shareholder CMNE

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La Française and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) formed a strategic partnership for the launch of a real estate investment and development vehicle: Société Foncière et Immobilière du Grand Paris. The joint venture between CPPIB (80%) and Caisse Fédérale du Crédit Mutuel Nord Europe (CMNE) (20%), La Française’s shareholder, will invest in major real estate projects linked to the Grand Paris infrastructure in the Greater Paris area. The parties will initially allocate €387.5 million in equity to the venture. The partnership will target regeneration and infrastructure-led investments.[ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Norges Bank Governor Voices Opinion on Relaxing SWF Withdrawals over Specific Uses

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Øystein Olsen, the Governor of Norges Bank, which oversees the Norway Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG), voiced his opinion on the Norwegian government’s plans to alter the rules that regulates the country’s SWF withdrawal rules in certain circumstances. The coalition government led by Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg wants to relax the limits on SWF withdrawals in specific cases. Norway’s government seeks to raid the fund to pay for the replacement of four major state buildings impacted by a terrorist attack and a crashed Royal Norwegian Navy frigate (KNM Helge Ingstad).

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