Australian pension fund to invest in cryptocurrencies for its 1.8 million members. – The Inquirer (FR)

Australian pension fund Rest Super will become the country’s first pension fund to invest in cryptocurrencies.

The fund has assets under management (AUM) of more than $ 46.8 billion and approximately 1.8 million members. The pension is the equivalent of a 401k individual retirement account in the United States and is mandatory for all employees. Until now, the $ 2.4 trillion industry has been extremely wary of cryptocurrencies, comform …

At Rest Super’s annual general meeting on November 23, the company’s chief investment officer, Andrew Lill, told members that the company views digital assets as an “important part” of its portfolio, but that it would proceed “with care and prudence “:

“It is still a very volatile investment, so any allocation exposure we make to cryptocurrencies is likely to become part of our diversified portfolio as it is initially quite a small allocation that can grow over time. “

Lill added that he believes that exposing members to cryptocurrency and blockchain technology could provide a ‘stable source of value’ in a period when investors are turning to cryptocurrencies to guard against banknote-based inflation.

“I think in an age of inflation, this could be a good place to invest,” he said.

Following the CIO speech, a Rest spokesperson said in a statement that it “definitely views cryptocurrencies as a way to diversify our members’ retirement savings.” [dar] I will not invest in the immediate future ”.

“We are currently conducting a thorough investigation on the asset class before making any decisions,” the spokesperson said. “We are also looking at the regulatory and safety aspects of investing in this category. “

These comments contrast with those of the Australian Super this week, with the chief executive of the $ 167 billion fund, Paul Schroder, saying on Monday that “we do not see cryptocurrencies as a potential investment for our members.”

Last month, it was reported that the public investment fund Queensland Investment Corporation (QIC) was looking to gain exposure to cryptocurrencies. However, the company told Business Insider this week that the reports were “incorrectly hinted” and downplayed any move to adopt digital assets.

QIC currency chief Stuart Simmons also said that while he expects pension funds to embrace cryptocurrencies in the future, “it will likely be a filter rather than a flood.”

The discussion comes at a potentially optimistic time for the Australian crypto market, after a Senate committee developed broad regulatory proposals in October as part of efforts to make the nation the next crypto hub, along with the Commonwealth Bank. of Australia (CBA). ) to offer cryptocurrency trading through your banking app at the beginning of the month.

As the country waits to see which large traditional finance company will be the next to embrace cryptocurrency, CBA CEO Matt Comyn said earlier this week that the bank was more motivated by fashion than risks associated with assets. digital.

“We see risks in participating, but we see greater risks in not participating,” he said.

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