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SWFI First Read, February 13, 2018

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Bank of America Analyzes Canadian Mortgage Packing Play

Bank of America Corporation is analyzing the possibility of putting riskier Canadian mortgages into bonds, creating stimulus in the country’s residential mortgage-backed security market. These mortgages would not necessarily be backed with Canadian government guarantees. Canadian regulators made it more difficult for consumers to qualify for government mortgage insurance.

Korean Opportunities: BNY Mellon Opens FX Room in Seoul

BNY Mellon opened its foreign exchange (FX) trading room in Seoul. Such instruments permitted include foreign exchange forwards and non-deliverable forwards. The move provides more access to Korean institutional investors, while providing these investors exposure to global currencies.

BNY Mellon Hires Rebecca Bridgeman – Collateral Management

BNY Mellon named Rebecca Bridgeman as vice president and relationship manager of collateral management. Bridgeman will be based in London. Before this role, she was at RBC as an associate director of global client coverage. She also worked at BNP Paribas in business development.

Grant & Eisenhofer Forms Intellectual Property Litigation Practice

In late January 2018, law firm Grant & Eisenhofer P.A. established a broad-based intellectual property practice. Leading the new practice is Dr. Eric Evain, a chemist and intellectual property trial lawyer. Evain joined Grant & Eisenhofer as a director. Previously, Evain was a Partner at Reed Smith. Evain holds a Ph.D. in organic chemistry.

AXA Investment Managers Combines LDI Unit in Europe

AXA Investment Managers consolidated its liability-driven investment teams under one group covering the United Kingdom, France and the Netherlands. The consolidate group is led by Mathilde Sauve.

Japan’s GPIF Awards Nissay Asset Management with ESG Disclosure Mandate

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Increasingly asset owners across the Asia-Pacific region are studying the impacts of environmental, social, and governance factors on listed companies. As more Japanese pensions augment asset allocation to listed equities, the importance of corporate non-financial disclosures and practices becomes clear. These disclosures can have a material impression on company stock prices. In addition, Japanʼs Stewardship Code and Corporate Governance Code in 2014 and 2015 were launched, respectively. These codes helped the (environmental, social, and governance) ESG concept gain momentum in Japan.

Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF), the largest public pension fund in the world, awarded a research mandate to Nissay Asset Management Corporation. The mandate entails studying ESG disclosures. The study will conduct a comparable analysis on ESG standards and practices, while taking into account input from both investors and companies. With around US$ 110.5 billion in assets under management, Nissay Asset Management is owned by Japanese life insurance giant Nippon Life Insurance Company.

As GPIF boosted its allocation to domestic equities, the asset owner took a deeper look into the impact of ESG on equity investing. GPIF is keen on improving efficiencies in Japan’s capital markets. GPIF is a universal owner of stocks, similar in some aspects to what Norway’s Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG) does.

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Norges Bank Real Estate Management Buys Central Paris Property

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Norges Bank Real Estate Management, the real estate unit of Norges Bank Investment Management (oversees Norway Global Pension Fund Global), has signed an agreement to acquire a 100 percent interest in an office property located on 54-56 rue la Boétie in central Paris.[ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Schlumberger Gets Closer to Eurasia Drilling Company

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Russia’s sovereign wealth fund, the Russian Direct Investment Fund, and American oilfield services giant Schlumberger (SLB) have planned a deal to invest in Russia’s Eurasia Drilling Company Limited. RDIF CEO Kirill Dmitriev made the announcement. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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