The reserve fund bought in 2016 debt with negative interest
The pension fund paid last year an average rate of -0.236% for acquiring Spanish Treasury bonds.
El Fondo de Reserva de la Seguridad Social está comprando deuda española con intereses negativos, es decir, está pagando para tener títulos del Tesoro español. Según consta en el Informe a las Cortes Generales de 2016 publicado este miércoles, las inversiones de la hucha de las pensiones perdieron mucha rentabilidad el año pasado. Hasta el punto que el tipo de interés medio de los títulos adquiridos se desplomó al -0,236% en 2016.
Tras haber extraido 67.337 millones de la hucha de la pensiones, los 15.020 millones que quedan en el Fondo de Reserva a fecha de diciembre de 2016 están invertidos al cien por cien en deuda pública española. Antes había también recursos invertidos en deuda de máxima calidad como la alemana o la francesa. Pero con la crisis se decidió que todo se dedicase a financiar al Estado español. De hecho, la hucha de las pensiones incluso consiguió obtener pingües beneficios debido a los elevados tipos de interés padecidos durante la crisis soberana.
But those returns ended with purchases of securities from the European Central Bank. Since then, many tranches of short-term sovereign debt have negative rates, that is, they charge investors for giving them their bonds. In part, this is because many entities and pension funds are obliged to keep a portion of their resources in risk-free assets such as sovereign debt. Like these, the Reserve Fund has been acquiring Spanish debt with negative rates.
Moreover, it did so in a timely manner in 2015. But in 2016 the average type of all purchases has been in negative territory. As explained in its report to the Cortes, the Reserve Fund has bought 2.525 million euros of debt with a negative average rate of 0.236%. And this has caused the Fund’s annual performance to fall to 0.9% from 1.05% in 2015 or 11.85% in 2014 thanks to the revaluations of the bonds.
The problem of negative rates is not limited to purchases of public debt. The Bank of Spain also charges the Reserve Fund with a 0.4% interest to keep the liquidity remains that it has not invested, as does the ECB with the banks. Or, in other words, the negative deposit rate that Mario Draghi has set is being passed on to force the bank to lend and not to keep the money. The pension payment system maintains an agreement with the Banco Popular that compensates for the liquidity it generates. However, this is not the case for the Reserve Fund, which is obliged by law to leave its remaining assets not invested in the Bank of Spain.
Since its inception in 2000, the accumulated performance of the Reserve Fund has been 4.55% annualized, above the 1.71% that the private pension plans show for a period of 15 years, said Wednesday In the Congress the Secretary of State of the Social Security, Tomás Burgos, during a appearance before the Commission of the Pact of Toledo. Burgos has pointed out that since the Fund was created the total yields amounted to 28,759 million euros and that 2,664 million correspond to 2016. In total, the various Governments had contributed between 2000 and 2011 about 52,113 million to feed the piggy bank Of pensions. At the end of March 2017, 15,148 million remained at the total acquisition price, 1.36% of GDP. And the Government has approved in the Budgets of 2017 a loan to the Social Security in the amount of 10,192 million to be able to pay the benefits.