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Financial developments

The 2018 result for the Church of Sweden’s asset management at the national level was SEK 142.9 million, which corresponds to a return of 1.8 per cent. Thus, for the seventh consecutive year, the return of fund exceeded its benchmark index. The market value of the investment assets as of 31 December 2018 amounted to SEK 8,295 million (previous year SEK 8,155 million).

Ten-year result and return

For the ten-year period 2009–2018, the accumulated return was 123.2 percent, corresponding to 8.4 percent in annual return. The real return target for the same period was 50.2 percent, corresponding to 4.2 percent per year. The graph below illustrates this. The annual real return, i.e. adjusted for inflation, was 7.3 percent on average during this period. The yield requirement in real terms has been three percent per year since 2010 and was four percent per year up to 2010.

The outcome for individual years can however vary considerably. The bar chart below illustrates this. Since 2009 we have exceeded our yield targets in eight of the past ten years.

Accumulated return since 2009
Accumulated return since 2009
Annual return since 2009
Annual return since 2009

Results and return 2018

The 2018 result including bank and administration fees amounted to SEK 142.9 million (SEK 761.6 million the previous year). The return on the overall portfolio amounted to 1.8 percent (10.3). This is 2.4 percentage points better than our benchmark index, but 3.2 percentage points lower than the real return target. This is the seventh consecutive year that the return exceeded the return of the weighted reference portfolio.

The equities fund

The equities fund contributed SEK 62.6 million net, but as shown in the table below there are large differences both between different markets (index) and different fund managers. The fund managers of asset classes Global Equities and Emerging Markets outperformed their benchmark indices by fully 7.0 and 6.5 percentage points respectively, while Swedish equities as a group had a negative result and in addition a return of 2.3 percentage points below index.

Fixed income investments

Fixed income investments contributed a return of 0.9 percent, in line with the index, while the corporate bonds fund declined 2.5 percent, which is 1.3 percentage points lower than the index.

Real estate

The real estate asset class contributed a return of fully 6.3 percent. However, the return is largely based on annual external valuations of the various real estate funds that we have invested in. These valuations are made annually but are often presented well into the first quarter, which is why we get a lag of one year in valuation development. The return in the 2018 results therefore includes the valuation as of 31 December 2017.

Alternative investments

Alternative investments gave a return of 5.2 percent, in line with the benchmark index of inflation plus 3 percent that we required from them. However, as previously stated, the running valuation of some of these unlisted and largely illiquid assets is often associated with a large portion of uncertainty. As in previous years, it is mainly SEB’s Microfinance funds which contribute to a steady ongoing return within this asset class. In most of the other holdings one has to wait until maturity before one can determine the result.

 

distribution between different assets as of december 31, 2018
Distribution between different assets as of december 31, 2018