- UK’s largest funds are investing as little as 0.3 per cent in British businesses
British pension funds are unpatriotically shunning UK companies, with those responsible for investments for MPs’ retirement savings being among the worst offenders.
An MoS investigation into these assets has revealed many of the UK’s largest funds are investing as little as 0.3 per cent of their billions of pounds in British businesses.
Instead, pension funds that manage the retirement savings of millions of retirees – including MPs, university academics, pilots and bankers – invest in foreign stock.
The Parliamentary Contributory Pension Fund (PCPF) invests just 1.7 per cent of its £835 million assets in Britain’s listed companies – compared to 59.8 per cent in global equities outside the UK.
The Universities Superannuation Scheme, which invests on behalf of 528,000 members, has a 4.4 per cent holding in listed UK stocks.
The pension fund for British Airways pilots just invests 0.7 per cent in British enterprises, as teh airline’s largest fund NAPs sold £81 million worth of investments in UK shares between 2021 and 2022
Chancellor Jeremy Hunt described the situation of investors choosing overseas companies over their high growth UK counterparts as ‘perverse’
And pensions for British Airways pilots sits at just 0.7 per cent. The airline’s largest fund, NAPS, sold £81 million worth of investments in UK shares between 2021 and 2022.
Jeegar Kakkad, of the Tony Blair Institute think-tank, said: ‘We are not backing ourselves, it’s as simple as that. This country has seen an almost total liquidation of UK pension funds holdings in listed UK equities built up over generations.’
Chancellor Jeremy Hunt has addressed the shortcomings: ‘We have a perverse situation in which UK institutional investors are not investing as much in UK high growth companies as their international counterparts.’
Experts have claimed the funds’ attitudes suggest Britain is turning its back on its best and brightest. The proportion of pension assets invested in UK-listed companies has fallen from 53 per cent in 1997 to 6 per cent in 2021, the Capital Markets Industry Taskforce found.
A PCPF spokesman said: ‘The Fund invests in a range of asset classes on a global basis, including a ten per cent allocation to UK properties.’