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Interest rates significantly above the BVG minimum interest rate at Vita Joint Foundation

Zurich November 9, 2015

The insured of Vita Joint Foundation will again benefit from a high level of interest earned on their retirement assets in 2016. Mandatory savings balances will earn 2.25% interest – 1% higher than the BVG minimum interest rate. Super-mandatory balances will earn as much as 3%.

Even in today's difficult savings environment with negative interest rates, balances with the Vita Joint Foundation are earning interest at a rate far above the minimum interest rate of 1.25% adopted by the Federal Council on October 28, 2015. 

The interest earned on the savings capital for 2016 is
  • 2.25% on BVG mandatory savings (1% above minimum rate)
  • 3% for super-mandatory balances (1.75% above minimum interest rate) 
This good level of interest earned is possible thanks to the successful and broadly diversified investment strategy the Vita Joint Foundation pursues in administering 10 billion in pension assets. The Foundation's innovative pension planning model is to form interest reserves in good investing years using returns above the target coverage ratio of 106% as of October 31. The Vita Joint Foundation then distributes these funds to the insured over a five-year period as additional interest. Over the years, this model has resulted in more balanced interest earned on retirement assets. The Vita Joint Foundation will thus be paying up to 1% more than the BVG minimum interest rate for the fourth time in a row (see table below). 


Vita Joint Foundation coverage ratio holding up well in low-interest-rate environment
The 2015 investing year has already impacted most pension funds' coverage ratios, but the Vita Joint Foundation has held up well despite the unfavorable conditions. On the cut-off date of October 31, 2015, the coverage ratio was 106.5% (in acc. with Article 44 para. 2, BVV2)*. This is made possible not only by a broadly diversified investment strategy, but also by the Vita Joint Foundation's high structural risk capacity resulting from separation of the saving process for the active insured and risk insurance. 

Some 19,000 businesses with over 115,000 employees have entrusted their occupational pension plans to the Vita Joint Foundation.

*The coverage ratio is calculated according to the Vita Classic pension planning model and is currently 106.5%. (Coverage ratio of comparable competitors 110.2%). In 2015 a new interest reserve of 0.5% is being allocated. The distribution mechanism in the Vita Classic pension model is such that the Joint Foundation immediately passes on one-fifth of the current year's interest reserve and one-fifth of the previous year's interest reserve to the insured (total 1% additional interest).

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Zurich Insurance Company Ltd and Zurich Life Insurance Company Ltd are responsible for dealing with the commercial and personal lines of the Zurich Insurance Group in Switzerland and the Principality of Liechtenstein. Zurich Switzerland is one of the largest insurers in Switzerland and appears on the market under the names Zurich and Zurich Connect.

Zurich Insurance Group is a leading multi-line insurance provider with a global network of subsidiaries and offices in Europe, North America, Latin America, Asia-Pacific and the Middle East as  well as other markets. It offers a wide range of general insurance and life insurance products and services for individuals, small businesses, mid-sized and large companies as well as multinational orporations. Zurich employs about 55,000 people serving customers in more than 170 countries. The Group, formerly known as Zurich Financial Services Group, is headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, where it was founded in 1872. The holding company, Zurich Insurance Group Ltd (ZURN), is listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange and has a level I American Depositary Receipt program (ZURVY) which is traded over-the-counter on OTCQX. Further information about Zurich is available at www.zurich.com.

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