20 March 2018 Schweizerisches Nationalmuseum, Zurich
Together with the Swiss Finance Institute (SFI), the Capco Institute hosted the Banking & Finance Forum in Zurich – an event that brought together around 200 renowned academics, senior financial industry executives and regulators to discuss new SFI research findings on investment-related topics.
Secondary buyouts (private equity firms selling a portfolio company to another private equity firm) account for more than half of private equity exit transactions in Europe. Based on his research results, Prof. François Degeorge, SFI Managing Director and Professor of Finance at the Università della Svizzera italiana, argued that transactions between private equity companies with complementary capabilities create value, while SBOs that are bought late in the investment cycle of the buying fund destroy value.
Switzerland has experienced steady house price growth for the past decade. Unlike most of Europe, the country did not suffer from an economic crisis. However, it is remarkable that real estate owners in Switzerland have been paying higher house prices (in proportion to disposable income) compared with other nations. Based on the findings of Prof. Alberto Plazzi, SFI Associate Professor of Finance at the Università della Svizzera italiana demand for housing should remain solid, although margins are shrinking. Particularly in ‘boomtowns’ such as Geneva and Zurich, investors do not foresee price correction in the near future. Instead, they expect rent and house prices to increase, with other European countries promising better yields.
Pension fund managers are facing significant challenges due to massive demographic changes and an increase of life expectancy. Furthermore, the low interest rate environment has substantial impact on yields. Prof. Eric Jondeau, SFI Professor of Finance at the University of Lausanne, analysed an optimal portfolio against current market conditions and concluded that long-term debts and the permission of borrowing are necessary for a successful performance of pension funds.
Dr. Michael Loretan, Member of the Executive Board and Head of Asset Management Division of the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA), gave the keynote speech on recent challenges in the asset management industry. He illustrated FINMA’s diverse strategic goals and its positioning from innovation friendliness and technological neutrality to issues such as cyber risk, anti-money-laundering, disruptive technologies and successful crisis prevention.
The Capco Institute delivers thought leadership to advance the field of applied finance by bringing together leading thinkers from both academia and the industry.