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Dutch big five pension funds lose €77bn in Q1 as coronavirus hits markets

THE NETHERLANDS. Four of the five biggest Dutch pension schemes have been hard hit by coronavirus-related panic on the financial markets, and their coverage ratios have shrunk to around 85%, according to first quarter figures.

The funds need to have coverage of 100% to be able to meet all their commitments. However, their assets shrank by €77bn – or around 8% – in the first three months of this year.‘Last quarter was dramatic,’ Peter Borgdorff, head of the health service pension fund Zorg en Welzijn told broadcaster NOS.

‘It is hard to watch so much money disappear in such a short space of time.’Nevertheless, he said, it is still too early to say what the lasting impact of coronavirus will be on pension funds, and, he points out, there has been recovery in April.

The funds have until the end of the year to shore up their assets and so avoid being required by law to make pension cuts.

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