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Title: Portfolio structure, real estate investment and the performance of defined contribution pension funds
Author: Ametefe, Frank Kwakutse
ISNI:       0000 0004 7966 7069
Awarding Body: University of Reading
Current Institution: University of Reading
Date of Award: 2018
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With the growing importance of defined contribution (DC) pension funds around the world, concerns have arisen over their ability to provide adequate income replacement for members and the liquidity of their invesments. The first part of this thesis focuses on the illiquidity associated with real estate investments. The first chapter provides a discussion of liquidity within the context of DC pension funds. The second empirical chapter employs the tracking error optimisation procedure in the construction of portfolios that include direct real estate and selected liquid, publicly traded assets. We find that this helps to improve the performance of these blended portfolios. In the second part of this thesis, we look at various ways in which the real value of DC pension contributions can be preserved. The third empirical uses contemporary econometric approaches in the analysis of the dynamic relationship between asset returns and inflation/interest rate changes. Real estate and bonds were found to be a hedge against all the inflation/interest rates measures analysed. Some non-UK assets were also found to be a good hedge against selected benchmarks. The fourth empirical chapter of this PhD thesis examines the optimal allocation within portfolios designed to hedge against the various inflation and interest rate benchmarks. When the investment objective is to strictly track these benchmarks, bonds and real estate dominate the portfolios. Real estate, stocks and alternative assets receive significant allocations within the portfolios constructed to provide maximum risk adjusted returns relative to the minimum return benchmarks. We observe that the allocation to real estate reduced significantly following the global financial crisis period with bonds appearing to take its place. On the whole, this thesis contributes to the discussion on how best DC pension portfolios could be designed to comply with current investment regulations regarding liquidity and minimum returns requirements.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral