By SOUTHCOM Public Affairs January 22, 2020 About 75 paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and 40 personnel from U.S. Army South will arrive in Colombia, January 23, to participate in an airborne assault exercise through January 29.During the airborne exercise, U.S. and Colombian paratroopers will conduct an airborne training insertion from U.S. and Colombian C-130 Hercules aircraft, followed by tactical exercises designed to simulate the securing of an airfield.Expert U.S. and Colombian personnel will practice working together to build interoperability and share strategic and tactical expertise.“We are honored to train with Colombia — a close friend of the U.S. and global partner to NATO,” said U.S. Navy Admiral Craig S. Faller, commander of U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM). “This airborne exercise demonstrates the interoperability, lethality, and professionalism of our militaries.”SOUTHOM routinely conducts partner and multinational exercises throughout Latin America and the Caribbean to strengthen partnerships, build readiness, and increase interoperability. This airborne exercise illustrates our enduring commitment to our shared neighborhood, the Western Hemisphere.
Societe Generale Securities Services (SGSS) has partnered with a French financial technology company to introduce automated performance commentaries for its asset management clients.The fintech firm, Addventa, uses artificial intelligence (AI) techniques to draft portfolio management commentaries in a range of languages and covering specific time periods, based on data from SGSS’ analytics tools.In a statement, SGSS said the new service would help fund managers and investment teams to meet their regulatory reporting requirements and free up time for staff to spend on other work.Damien Jamet, head of transformation and innovation at SGSS, said: “This partnership is another illustration of Societe Generale’s open innovation and partnership approach with the fintech ecosystem.” SGSS has joined a growing list of companies exploring uses of AI and related technologies to improve financial products and processes.Most recently, Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund published a report that suggested using AI could improve its analysis of manager performance and inform its selection process.Dutch asset manager NN Investment Partners hired a head of AI investing in September. Rani Piputri has been tasked with overseeing the company’s 16 investors, data scientists and researchers running €11bn across several factor investing strategies.Earlier this year, the Finnish Centre for Pensions ran tests that suggested AI technology could predict — to some extent — which individuals would take early retirement on health grounds.In tests, the technology managed to identify four out of five retirees taking a disability pension two years before they had actually done so, the centre said.
The ethos of DGFs is to offer a wide range of assets that all react differently to market movements. Some will move up while others move down, theoretically offsetting losses.However, with equity markets being artificially supported by quantitative easing and bond markets finding favour with yield-hungry investors, the fundamental DGF process has often failed in the past 10 years, as loss-offsetting has not been needed.Yet, despite poor performances, Arthur said he valued the diversification these funds brought to institutional portfolios: “In many UK pension funds, a DGF is the only bit of the investment that can be used to express asset allocation decisions in a timely fashion.”However, some managers’ reliance on diversification – and a failure to use this opportunity to make dynamic investment decisions – was cited as one of the reasons for some investors’ disenchantment with the strategy.Steven Crane, a trustee for a small, open defined benefit scheme that has switched several of its managers in the past seven years, said some of its DGFs focused too much on diversification instead of tracking the equity market when it made sense, for example.Crane’s scheme was “wary of pulling the trigger now” and moving back into DGFs, he said, with the sponsor’s priority being low-volatility, low-risk return streams.The panel agreed that DGFs could help deliver lower volatility to an investment portfolio as a whole.Overall, the participants said the current mood could take another five years to change, with the onus falling on consultants to help clients decide which type of DGF might help them in the future.However, this has become a complex task, as the universe now contains more than 100 DGFs, up from 20 a decade ago, according to Arthur.The white paper is available to download here. Multi-asset funds face years of trying to win back institutional investment clients after a decade of wrong turns, according to a panel of trustees, fund managers and consultants.In a discussion, hosted by data provider Camradata, institutional investors pointed to where the funds had failed them since the financial crisis – and what their managers would have to do to win back confidence.John Arthur, senior consultant at MJ Hudson Allenbridge, said it had been a “tough few years” for diversified growth funds (DGFs), another term for multi-asset strategies.“A long bull market in equities since the global financial crisis has made clients wonder whether to keep faith with DGFs,” said Arthur. “A basic equity/bond allocation would have done a better job than most.”