first_imgPension funds should be able to finance UK infrastructure through a bond aimed solely at the industry and offering a yield above the prevailing market rate, Alan Rubenstein has suggested.Speaking in a personal capacity, Rubenstein, chief executive of the Pension Protection Fund (PPF), suggested the pension bond as one way to support the defined benefit (DB) industry in the UK, with assets ringfenced into a sovereign wealth fund.In a debate at the National Association of Pension Funds annual conference in Manchester, former pensions minister Steve Webb urged the industry to focus on the risk-sharing made possible by his defined ambition agenda, while Bill Galvin, chief executive of the Universities Superannuation Scheme, argued it was vital to be honest about the role played by trustees in tackling the DB challenge.Rubenstein argued that the pension bond he proposed dealt with the industry’s hunt for yield but also helped the UK government in its attempts to secure financing for infrastructure projects. “My idea is that these bonds would be long term, say 30 years,” he said.“They might be inflation-linked, or they could be fixed. But, crucially, they would pay a yield that is perhaps 1% above current – instead of 2.5%, in Gilts perhaps 3.5%.”He argued they would only be sold to pension funds, with income ring-fenced to rebuild infrastructure.“Frankly, if we can rebuild our schools, our roads, our hospitals at this kind of rate, we will be getting a good deal,” he said.“If [chancellor of the Exchequer] George Osborne really wants £20bn (€27bn) quickly for infrastructure, this would be the way to do it.”Rubenstein argued that it would help address the problem of pension scheme underfunding and held out the possibility that if deficits improved markedly, it could spell the end of the PPF levy, set at £615m for 2016-17.“I’m asking you to support pension bonds, build a better Britain and save DB pensions,” he said as he concluded his presentation.Webb struck a note of caution, however, questioning whether Rubenstein’s argument that the pension bond was in the interest of inter-generational solidarity rang true.In a good-humoured rebuttal that eventually saw Webb’s call for collective defined contribution voted the best proposal by the audience – 56.6% to Rubenstein’s 43.4% – the former MP noted that the debt incurred through the bond would need to be paid off by future generations, at a higher rate than the UK currently borrows.Webb hypothesised how a conversation on the proposed pension bonds would occur in the Treasury.“I don’t think I could go the chancellor and say ‘You know you can borrow at next to nothing at the moment, do you like to pay more for your borrowing for infrastructure?’” he said.“I don’t think I’d even get through the door. It’s a lovely idea, but it won’t happen.”last_img read more

first_imgCredit: Berlyn PhotographyA US mega mansion nicknamed Billionaire has sold for $94 million – a whopping $156 million discount off its original listing price of $250 million. And in case you are wondering, that’s in US dollars so about $137.5 million in Aussie dollars. MORE NEWS: Ray White boss lists own home Earlier this year, News Corp Australia and a group of Brisbane real estate agents toured the jaw-dropping property, which comes with its own helipad, 40-seat movie theatre, candy wall, infinity pool, bespoke art installations, and Louis Vuitton-styled bowling alley. See, we were there! But back to Bel Air. Billionaire at 924 Bel Air Rd, Los Angeles, has sold for US$94 million USA. Source: www.realtor.comThe sprawling private residence, which was developed by handbag designer and real estate developer Bruce Makowsky, is located at 924 Bel Air Road in Los Angeles, and was once the most expensive house ever listed on the market in the US. Real estate developer Bruce Makowsky The US sale falls just short of Australia’s biggest ever residential sale – an incredible nine-bedroom penthouse in Sydney that just sold recently for more than $140 million.And last year, Australia had a $100 million sale of Lady Mary Fairfax’s property at Point Piper in Sydney to Atlassian co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes. It also makes Brisbane’s most expensive house – 1 Leopard St at Kangaroo Point – look like spare change. It sold for $18.48 million in 2017 and is back on the market. RELATED: Take a look inside Brisbane’s most expensive house The riverfront mansion that set a new Brisbane auction record Located in the exclusive and gated Bel Air residential precinct, its neighbours include Beyonce, actor Salma Hayek, Hyatt Hotel heir Tony Pritzker, and French luxury goods magnate Francois Pinault. Beyonce throws shade at a woman talking to Jay ZAt the time, Williams & Williams Estates Group agent Rayni Williams said the property at was a rare, dream listing.“Extreme wealth from every industry settles in Bel Air,” Ms Williams said.Billionaire has 12 bedrooms and 21 bathrooms spread over four levels and 3500sq m of living space.Two of those bedrooms are OTT opulent master suites – the only two rooms that we were not permitted to photograph during the tour.We were told by the listing agents that they were the only spaces they wanted to keep “private” for the new owner.Regardless of who you are, rich new owner, I have seen inside your boudoir – and I might have poked around in the bedside tables. Source: www.realtor.comSo what else do you get for that mega price tag? Besides the house, which envokes some serious sensory overload on its own, you also get most of accessories and inclusions used to style the property.For example, there is a custom Etienne Moyat wall, a Yibai Liao oversized Leica camera sculpture and hand-carved honey onyx stone pieces.All up, there are over a hundred art installations and a huge collection of key pieces by some of the world’s most exclusive design houses, including a Hermes bag sculpture. Source: www.realtor.comThe two wine cellars inside the house also require a special mention as they both come fully stocked. Credit: Berlyn PhotographyThere is also a helipad conveniently located close to the home office for an easy commute, a 40-seat 4K Dolby Atmos James Bond-themed theatre which we got to experience first hand.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus11 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market11 hours agoMy ears are still ringing! Credit: Berlyn Photography Credit: Berlyn PhotographyThere is a four-lane bowling alley and a games area complete with authentic Teckell ping pong, foosball and pool tables, a massive candy wall, a bar that could rival a nightclub and a collection of rare cars and motorcycles. Credit: Berlyn Photography Credit: Berlyn PhotographyIn terms of technology, Billionaire has one of the world’s most advanced smart home systems, including a crocodile skin-lined elevator, a pop-up outdoor movie theatre and a whole-of-residence control system.Outside there is a swim-around jacuzzi, a huge infinity pool with a swim-up bar and waterfalls that have been designed to make the most of the 270 degree views. Source: www.realtor.comI have since done the numbers. There were 13 of us on the trip to the US in July so we could have each pitched in about US$7.4 million to buy Billionaire.But I would have had to work for another 104 years. And live to at least 140 years of age. Yeah, maybe not. Credit: Berlyn Photography Source: www.realtor.com *Samantha Healy is the Courier Mail and Quest real estate editor and was in the US for the Inman Connect conference in Las Vegas earlier this year. Broncos boss sells Brisbane home for eye-watering pricelast_img read more