CFA Institute Centre for Financial Market Integrity introduced a voluntary code of conduct for pension plan trustees worldwide, with 10 primary principles as a framework to help manage issues ethically. The 16-page Code of Conduct for Members of a Pension Scheme Governing Body instructs trustees to maintain independence and objectivity by, among other actions, avoiding conflicts of interest, refraining from self-dealing (such as engaging in any contractual relationship with firms that provide services to the pension fund), and refusing any gift that could reasonably be expected to affect their loyalty, according to the code.
(Click here to see Pensions & Investments earlier report on the code of conduct.)
The CFA Institute Centre encourages pension plans to adopt the code to establish an ethical framework for governing board members and to demonstrate their commitment to serving the best interests of participants and beneficiaries, the statement said.
The code is available here.
There are many things for an individual member of a pension governing board to consider in undertaking such a role, but acting to the highest ethical standards should be foremost in their minds, Mark Anson, president and executive director of Nuveen Investments and a member of the CFA Institute board of governors, said in the statement. The code is a valuable reference tool, applicable regardless of jurisdiction and type of scheme, which can be used to address ethical responsibilities and best serve the interests of participants and beneficiaries.
The code was produced by a CFA Institute Centre-led group, consisting of representatives from the Council of Institutional Investors, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the U.K. National Association of Pension Funds, Swiss Association of Pension Funds, Hong Kong Retirement Schemes Association and Dutch Association of Industrywide Pension Funds.