Four prominent North American pension funds have helped launch the Global Peer Financing Association to advance peer-to-peer securities lending by asset owners, the group said Thursday.
The pension funds — the $396.9 billion California Public Employees' Retirement System, Sacramento, the C$94.1 billion ($72 billion) Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan, Toronto, the $100.2 billion Ohio Public Employees Retirement System, Columbus, and the State of Wisconsin Investment Board in Madison, which manages $118.5 billion in assets, including the $107.9 billion Wisconsin Retirement System — joined with eSecLending, Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt and Credit Benchmark to create GPFA, to make peer-to-peer trading activity by asset owners easier and more efficient.
To officials at the four founding pension funds, peer-to-peer transactions have resulted in increased revenues and liquidity, CalPERS investment manager Dan Kiefer said in a group statement. Other benefits include diversified counterparts, lower costs, increased transparency and the predictability of demand, SWIB managing analyst Christopher Benish said.
OPERS senior portfolio manager Jerry May said the new framework will help asset owners with limited internal resources evaluate alternative counterparties and navigate the approval process as well as ongoing administration.
"GPFA can serve as a central collection point for the buy-side community," said Rob Goobie, assistant vice president of collateral management, derivatives and fixed income at HOOPP.
Membership is open to all asset owners and managers.