Issue: June/July 2006

First Word

The term “broad-based black economic empowerment” can become a misnomer. The codes are confusing and anomalous, even to the extent that the most broadly based non-governmental organisations don’t know whether they’re included or excluded. Read full article...

Victim of Success

Alexander Forbes, a giant in the retirement-fund industry, is the target of government and consumers for practices that allegedly earn it “secret profits”. While the outcome of an independent review is awaited, it’s possible that neither Alexander Forbes nor the industry will be quite the same again. There seems a lot for which they will have to answer.Read full article...


Surplus apportionment; Chinese puzzle; pensions outsourcing.


South Africa’s first black actuary has strong ideas on why there are so few black actuaries. It’s a situation he, with other professionals, is setting out to remedy. And they need to succeed.


Ever heard of Ditikani? If not, you’re about to. It’s intending to launch a R50 million bond that will test pension funds’ commitment to corporate social investment.

This & That

Long-term insurance ombud reports; Adjudicator rules on a trustee’s personal liability; Futuregrowth takes its ethics public; AICC deserves better support; Waiting for Ghavalas.


An influential business voice has entered the debate on retirement funds’ recognition for BEE ownership. The submission has been carefully drawn, and Trade & Industry Minister Mandisi Mphahlwa is listening.

Narrative reporting

Ordinary people should be able to understand what companies are obliged to disclose. But typically the disclosures are so technical they’re intelligible only to experts. In the UK and Europe, regulators and companies are trying to get it right. Their reasoning resonates in South Africa.


Old Mutual’s survey on retirement funds does not entirely show service providers and trustees in the best light. One of the biggest problems relates to communication.


A cross-section of asset managers is interviewed on their corporate ethics in dealing with conflicts and clients. Standards are high, but should be seen to be high.

State of the industry

There are three possible scenarios. Dion George shares conclusions from his doctoral thesis on retirement funds.


Rest assured that National Treasury will produce its second discussion document on fund reform, someday.