The trustees of pension funds have the responsibility to invest workers’ retirement savings efficiently. When the retirement savings of workers’ are invested in financial markets, pension boards utilise the services of asset managers for a fee. As part of their fiduciary duty, trustees must assess the value that they obtain from contracting with one asset manager over another.

In recent years, there has been increased scrutiny around the transparency and the level of fees charged by the asset management industry. Recent laws in the Netherlands and Australia have improved the transparency of asset managers’ fees. In the UK, a 2017 Financial Conduct Authority Report recommended that a standardised template of costs and charges be agreed for the evaluation of asset manager costs. The CWC develops practical guidance for unions and trustees to navigate through the complex web of fees in the investment chain to optimize value for pension beneficiaries.