MetLife Hires UBS's Matus as Strategist for Investing Unit

  • Matus will help formulate insurer’s global market outlooks
  • Insurer has been expanding in third-party asset management

MetLife Inc.’s investing unit hired Drew Matus, formerly of UBS Group AG, as chief market strategist to help add third-party clients.

Matus will be responsible for formulating the insurer’s global and economic market outlooks, the New York-based company said Wednesday in a statement.

The insurer has been increasing its focus on asset management since Chief Investment Officer Steven Goulart set up a business in 2012 to oversee funds for third-party clients such as pensions or sovereign wealth funds. MetLife has also added staff from JPMorgan Chase & Co. and BlackRock Inc. and is among insurers luring Wall Street veterans for investment operations. Allstate Corp. in December hired UBS’s John Dugenske as chief investment officer.

“Drew brings a wealth of experience to MetLife,” Richard Leist, executive vice president and head of global portfolio management, said in the statement. “His two decades of financial services industry knowledge and strong track record of actionable, strategic advice will be invaluable to our team as we make investment decisions in increasingly dynamic markets.”

Matus was most recently deputy chief U.S. economist for UBS. He was a visible presence for the bank, commenting in the media about monetary policy, the labor market and consumer-spending data. Pranita Sookai, a spokeswoman for Zurich-based UBS, declined to comment.

He previously worked at firms including Bank of America Corp. and Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. and had a post at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, according to the statement. He has a bachelor’s degree from Colby College and an MBA from New York University’s Stern School of Business.

MetLife jumped $1.89, or 3.6 percent, to $54.33 at 11:05 a.m. in New York, the biggest gain in the 21-member S&P 500 Insurance Index. The company is the largest U.S. life insurer by assets.

— With assistance by Sonali Basak, and Lisa Du

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