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UK Pension Funds Turn to Illiquid Assets After Selling Spree

  • Some pensions’ allocations warped by recent market turmoil
  • Many funds are now looking to trim exposure to private assets

UK pension funds, assessing their portfolios after a turbulent two months, are looking at selling down some of the private equity and real estate assets they couldn’t unload during the height of the crisis. 

Pensions collectively sold billions of pounds of stocks and bonds to meet margin calls as a spike in UK rates caused derivative losses. While the stress has subsided, those moves have left many plans with a higher-than-desired proportion of illiquid assets such as infrastructure, property, private equity and private debt, according to pension consultants whose clients are considering divestments.