NEW YORK - Goldman, Sachs & Co. launched the Goldman Sachs Crossholdings-Adjusted Japan Index, calculated using that part of the market capitalization that is not already owned by affiliated corporations.
The index is a modification of the FT/S&P Actuaries Japan Index. The cross-holdings measure for each stock in the new index comes from Frank Russell Co., Tacoma, Wash., and Nomura Research Institute, Tokyo, which have developed a method for calculating cross-holdings ratios for almost all Japanese stocks.
According to Goldman, compared with existing benchmarks, the GSCA Japan Index more closely matches the aggregate portfolio held by foreign investors as well as the actual liquidity available in the daily marketplace. Adjusting for cross-holdings produces an almost 50% reduction of Japan's market capitalization, which should result in a lower exposure to Japan in world and regional portfolios.
BOSTON - The Pioneer Group Inc. announced that Pioneer First, an open-ended mutual fund to be managed by KUIF, Pioneer's Russian investment management subsidiary, has passed its last regulatory approval hurdle in Russia.
Marketing to domestic Russian investors is expected to begin within the next few weeks.
KUIF was selected last November by the Federal Commission for the Securities Market of the Russian Federation as one of three firms to participate in a pilot program for establishing mutual funds. It is the first of these firms to win approval for a fund.
NEW YORK - World markets in September continued their recovery from July's correction, as the Morgan Stanley Capital International World Index rose 3.8% in U.S. dollar terms during the month. But for the third quarter, the index was only 0.9% higher.
The MSCI Europe Australasia Far East Index advanced 2.5% in September, but declined 0.5% for the quarter. The MSCI Emerging Markets Free Index inched up 0.7%, but finished the quarter with a 4.1% drop.
Among the strongest developed markets for the month were Hong Kong, up 6.5%; Italy, up 6.3%; and France and the United States, both up 5.4%. Austria's was the weakest developed market, posting a 3% decline.
Among emerging markets, the strongest performers were: Venezuela, which, in dollar terms, jumped 19.3%; Turkey, up 9.5%, and Argentina, up 9%. India's market, which posted a 8.2% drop, was the worst.
HOUSTON - Emerging Markets Real Estate Fund - a joint venture between Hines, TCW and Dean Witter Realty - had its final closing Oct. 7.
The fund, which will pursue investment opportunities in the development of real estate in emerging market countries, closed with $410 million, exceeding the fund's $250 million target. Tax-exempt investors accounted for about one-third of the commitments. Most of the money raised came from U.S. investors.
The fund will be aiming for the expected higher returns from the development of modern office, residential and mixed use space in European, Asian and Latin American countries.
The fund expects to develop projects on behalf of several of Hines' existing clients as well as other blue-chip American, European and Asia multinational corporations.
LONDON - U.K. pension funds sold off a net of 1.9 billion [currency in pounds] ($2.95 billion) in U.K. equities during the second quarter, continuing the first quarter's sell-off of 2.4 billion, according to the U.K. government's Office for National Statistics.
However, net purchases of U.K. shares by insurance companies, investment trusts and unit trusts more than offset the pension fund sales.
Total U.K. institutional net purchases of British shares hit 2.3 billion, a sharp reversal of a 200 million sell-off in the first quarter.
Second-quarter net investment by British pension funds totaled 3.4 billion, 800 million higher than in the first quarter. Net investment in U.K. gilts totaled 1.8 billion, up from 1.5 billion; net purchases of authorized unit trusts dropped by 200 million to 700 million. Investment in short-term assets remained at 1.7 billion. British pension funds also made 600 million in net purchases of overseas stocks.
Total U.K. institutional net investment hit15.3 billion in the second quarter, up from 13.7 billion in the first quarter.
In addition to U.K. equities, net purchases were 4.8 billion in gilts, 4.3 billion in cash equivalents, 1.8 billion in overseas assets and 2.1 billion in other types of assets.
LEATHERHEAD, England - The 2.4 billion ($3.8 billion) Merchant Navy Officers Pension Fund named Chase Manhattan Bank, London, as global custodian, consolidating the fund's custody arrangements.
Previously, Lloyds Bank had provided custody for the fund's U.K. securities, while Bank of New York provided global custody for overseas securities.
As of March 31, 51% of plan assets were invested in U.K. equity and fixed-income securities while 35% were invested in overseas securities. The remainder of the fund was invested in property, cash and subsidiary trading companies, which are not custodied externally.
The selection did not reflect dissatisfaction with the previous custodians, but a need to consolidate arrangements and add other services, said Geoff Henry, chief executive, in a release.
Chase also will provide multicurrency investment accounting and a data extraction service for performance measurement.