Due to a technical problem on Wednesday Jan
16, we are upgrading the news management system by a Canadian
software company, which will be
completed in coming days.
It has taken longer than
anticipated. That is one of the drawbacks of outsourcing. C'est
la vie - even Google News updating falls behind at times!
We expect to have our upgraded
news system on stream on Wednesday.
News Headlines to Jan 16 2008
Today's News Links
Tuesday's stories and links from Jan 17 2008
Irish pension funds have lost
another 10% in the first few weeks of 2008 wiping an additional €10
billion off the value of pension assets
According to figures released by pension
consultants Mercer today, the average Irish pension fund has lost
another 10% in the first few weeks of 2008 thus wiping an additional
€10billion off the value of pension assets.
Mercer says that this is certainly unwelcome
news for trustees and members of such funds particularly in light of
2007 performance which saw the average fund lose close to 4%.
However, Mercer has cautioned pension funds
against taking any knee-jerk reactions in response to the current
market volatility. Tom Geraghty, Worldwide
Partner and head of investment consulting at Mercer, said:
"We would caution trustees against taking rash decisions at this
time. What is needed is a measured reassessment of investment
strategy against current market and economic conditions. Pension
fund investment strategy is set with a long-term framework in mind,
and implementation of any strategic change requires careful
planning. We have seen such volatility in equity markets in the
recent past and those investors who resisted the temptation to make
any knee-jerk reactions ultimately fared better in the long run. The
temptation is strong but I would urge against trying to 'time the
market' by making daring investment calls. History has shown that
such a strategy just doesn't pay off".
Mr. Geraghty added: "Any action needed will
depend on the particular circumstances facing individual pension
funds. Considerations should include whether trustees have already
adopted a defensive strategic position. Another factor is pain
tolerance - that is, the ability of a pension fund to 'ride it out'
and make good any shortfalls should the situation fail to improve."
However in relation
to the individual investor, perhaps the advice of Warren Buffet
holds true at this time: "The time to be afraid is
when everyone else is greedy and the time to be greedy is when
everyone else is afraid".
Geraghty observed: "There's no doubt that
we have entered a period of fear in the markets, sentiment is as
negative as we’ve ever seen and everyone is convinced that recession
is upon us. The brave investor who follows a contrarian view and
invests accordingly may well gain from the current market fear and