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NTMA looks for commodities experts Back  
The National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA) is looking to hire commodity experts to provide enhanced commodity index management services for the National Pensions Reserve Fund (NPRF).

The NTMA is interested in ‘exploring, to the extent they are available, innovative or structured products or services that tenderers may be able to provide’. It is intended to appoint one or more managers and the mandate(s) awarded will total in the region of €400 million to be funded over a three year period. This represents just under 2 per cent of the €21 billion pension fund.

The NTMA is open-minded about the vehicle(s) used by the managers to provide enhanced commodity index performance e.g. segregated accounts, pooled accounts, index notes, exchange traded funds, bespoke fund vehicles etc. A physical investment in the underlying assets is not a necessity. Tenders have to be submitted to the NTMA by November 12.

Meanwhile, the French pension fund, the FRR is also looking for commodity managers. The €33.4 billion buffer fund wants to invest an initial €2 billion in a commodities mandate.

The NPRF has also just appointed a panel of three transition managers, Citigroup, Lehman Brothers and State Street, in a bid to improve cost efficiency. The three managers have been appointed for a four-year term to help the NTMA manage the transition of assets, securities and cash, including related derivative and foreign exchange transactions, managed on behalf of the reserve fund.

During the third quarter, in which it posted a return of -0.9 per cent, the fund continued its diversification into property and private equity investment vehicles. It committed a total of €156 million to three private equity investment vehicles and €35 million to one property investment vehicle. The private equity commitment includes a €15 million commitment to Delta Equity Fund III - the fund’s first commitment to an Irish venture capital fund. The fund’s total private equity commitment now stands at €4929 million and its total property commitment stands at €1,062 million.

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