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Director of Asset Consulting
HQ Phone:  (952) 842-5600
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335 Madison Avenue 21St Floor
New York City, New York,10017
Towers Perrin is a global professional services firm that helps organizations improve performance through effective people, risk and financial management. The firm provides innovative solutions in the areas of human capital strategy, program design and managem... more.
Paul Laband, the national head of Towers Perrin's asset consulting practice, says it has been very clear over the past two years that a rising number of super funds have begun making hedge fund investments a part of their allocation strategies.
"We have supported that investment on the basis of diversification." However, he says a distinction needs to be drawn between hedge funds as a separate asset class and a separate asset style. Laband says while a 5 per cent allocation seems appropriate and prudent, he believes that the allocation will probably grow beyond that figure over time. He regards APRA's statement as a warning to super funds to be rigorous in their assessment of hedge funds and to do their homework. But he adds that there is very clearly a future for hedge funds as an asset allocation tied up with the prevailing structural environment. Leave a comment
Paul Laband, head of asset consulting at Towers Perrin HR Services, will become co-head of asset consulting at Russell Investment Group Australia. ...
- Paul Laband is director of Asset Consulting with Towers Perrin
Towers Perrin's director of asset consulting, Paul Laband, says his firm has been sounding warnings for some time."We have been telling clients for the last couple of years that we are heading into an environment where investment returns will be lower, but that there won't be any reduction in volatility," he says. Laband believes funds are progressively taking this on board: "Funds should not be reacting to the market decline, but they should be thinking about the change in the total environment."He expects to see funds make significant changes within the composition of their growth assets, placing greater emphasis on income producing assets such as property, as well as taking more interest in absolute return assets.Although alternative investments will remain a small part of most fund portfolios, Laband expects the market downturn to accelerate the growth of investments in hedge funds.In equities, he argues that selection of managers will become much more important and expects there to be greater differentiation between equity managers.Laband also expects that a sustained period of low returns will make life more difficult for index funds."If returns are going to be lower, then if you can get an extra 1% out of an active manager, that's going to be much more important," he says.
Laband joins Towers Perrin as the investment director of TRM, Towers Perrin's specialist adviser to large superannuation funds.
Laband will also take over from Hazel McNeilage as the head of Towers Perrin's asset consulting business. Laband had been at NAM for about five years and left a few months after it was announced that National would acquire the funds management business of MLC. Prior to his role at NAM, Laband was managing director of Abbey life Investment Services in the UK.