What U.S. and Other Non-Swiss Portfolio Managers Need to Know About Managing Assets of Swiss Occupational Benefit Plans

Swiss occupational benefit plans – a pillar of the Swiss social security system – are increasingly outsourcing portfolio management responsibilities to investment professionals, including “foreign” (i.e., non-Swiss) managers, in response to the growing complexity of investment management. In a guest article, Stephanie Comtesse, counsel at Bär & Karrer, provides an overview of Swiss occupational benefit plans; how management of these plans by foreign service providers fits within existing and proposed Swiss legislation; and additional legal considerations caused by the outsourcing of these responsibilities. For coverage of additional Swiss regulations, see “New Swiss Regulations Require Appointment of Local Agents and Increased Disclosure in Hedge Fund Documents” (May 14, 2015); “Swiss Hedge Fund Marketing Regulations, BEA Forms and Form ADV Updates” (Mar. 5, 2015); and “The Changing Face of Alternative Asset Management in Switzerland” (Feb. 2, 2012). For analysis of similar outsourcing by U.S. pension plans, see our three-part series entitled “Understanding U.S. Public Pension Plan Delegation of Investment Decision-Making to Internal and External Investment Managers”: Part One (Jan. 23, 2014); Part Two (Feb. 6, 2014); and Part Three (Feb. 21, 2014).

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