Testing Times: Monitor’s Latest SWF Report

Ashby Monk

The Monitor Group’s Victoria Barbary and Edward Chin have just released a new report on SWFs in the Middle East and North Africa during the financial crisis. Coming in at 135 pages, this will keep the data starved SWF wonks (i.e. me) happy for a few hours. Some interesting blurbs below:

“The crisis exposed problems in how the funds manage risk and uncertainty. Many had never experienced a downturn and seemed ill-prepared to recognize signals of impending trouble or take effective action. This suggests a need to review or put in place improved sensing mechanisms, probabilistic assessment of potential outcomes, and actionable plans to limit damage and facilitate adaptation to changing circumstances.

To manage more effectively in uncertain times, funds may wish to re-examine their organization structures, human asset policies, information and intelligence systems, and approaches to managing risk and uncertainty.

Pressure to improve governance and accountability is rising. Sovereign government owners are seeking more accountability and appear to be pushing for shifts in portfolio composition by asset class, geography, and sector. Increasing external demands have encouraged more disclosure and peer oversight to take advantage of more favorable public opinion.”

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This website is a project of Professor Gordon L. Clark and Dr. Ashby Monk of the School of Geography and the Environment at the University of Oxford. Their research on sovereign wealth funds is funded by the Leverhulme Trust and The Rotman International Centre for Pension Management.

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