Álvaro Anguita, CEO of MAPFRE AM.
At the end of March, the Spanish government announced that workers affected by ERTEs (Expediente de Regulación Temporal de Empleo — temporary layoffs) and self-employed people who experienced a fall in income as a result of the state of emergency would be able to access the savings stored in their pension plans in advance. However, in an interview published in EXPANSIÓN (a Spanish economics and business newspaper) on Monday, Álvaro Anguita, Managing Director of MAPFRE AM, said, “requests by those affected by temporary layoffs to access the savings stored in pension plans in advance has not so far been the avalanche the sector feared.” In particular, the expert referred to the possibility of a barrage of requests that would be difficult to manage internally, but this was not the case, at least not at MAPFRE.
MAPFRE Vida y Pensiones, the insurance group’s management company for these products, recorded requests from around 500 participants, according to data as on May 8, for benefits totaling around 650,000 euros. This represents 0.2 percent of the total number of participants and 2 percent of the total number of benefits accrued in the year. Moreover, the situation is developing favorably, despite the complexity of the current environment. At the end of April, the net underwriting for individual pension funds was 20.54 million euros, of which 11.5 million euros pertained to MAPFRE Capital Responsable, one of the company’s ESG alternatives.
Anguita believes that these positive figures are due to the Programa tu Futuro (Program your Future) plan that was announced at the end of 2018, but has been officially operational since the beginning of last year. This initiative guides participant savings based on their planned time of retirement and risk appetite. This is a free solution that automatically adjusts each client’s retirement savings to their own risk profile, based on the client’s age. “We are offering a discretionary management service for pension investments,” Anguita said recently in an interview with MAPFRE’s Editorial Team. In addition, he highlighted that this service also facilitates the sale of these products through the network. “Pension plan investments are distributed on behalf of the client by the same team that is involved in MAPFRE Group’s Global Asset Allocation Committee, so there is a shared interest,” he added.