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Swiss pension supervisor ‘overstepped authority’ with audit proposal

first_imgIn 2015 OAK carried out a comprehensive survey of the quality of external audit reports and found a high error rate. It subsequently issued a draft directive laying down requirements for auditors, which the cabinet noted was strongly criticised by associations and authorities.The government was subsequently commissioned to check whether OAK’s directive was in line with its legal authority and to potentially consider adjustments. Today’s report is the outcome of that review process.It reaching its conclusions the government also had the input of an opinion from an independent expert, Thomas Gächter of the University of Zurich, although it effectively disagreed with his view that OAK should be denied any authority to give instructions to auditors.If the supervisor were only permitted to issue recommendations, it would ultimately not be able to fulfil its task of making sure that the occupational pension system as a whole was functioning reliably, according to the government.However, the statutory authority to issue directives only applied to those that were needed for quality assurance, it noted in its report. It did not extend to issuing stipulations relating to the admission of auditors, which was the responsibility of the federal audit supervisor.The audit authority has previously warned about weaknesses in the auditing of the country’s pension funds. The Swiss federal pensions regulator “exceeded its legal authority” when it proposed requirements that related to the admission of external auditors of occupational pension funds, according to the country’s government.Although the Oberaufsichtskommission (OAK BV) was allowed to issue certain technical instructions to pension fund auditors as part of its statutory mandate, the introduction of a special permit for examining pension funds was a matter for lawmakers, the federal council said in a report published today.However, it was in agreement with the OAK that there were issues that need to be addressed with regard to the auditing of occupational pension funds, as previously outlined by the regulator.The cabinet had therefore instructed the federal department for internal affairs to weigh possible legislative steps, including whether the federal audit supervisory authority should be assigned sole responsibility for admitting and supervising auditors of occupational pension funds.last_img read more

Imperious Kipchoge wins in Londonagain as Kosgei upsets favourites

first_imgBy Peter HallLONDON (Reuters) – Eliud Kipchoge ran the second fastest marathon time ever to clinch his fourth London Marathon title on Sunday, ahead of Britain’s Mo Farah who struggled in fifth, while Kenya’s Brigid Kosgei impressed to win the women’s race.Kenya’s Kipchoge made it an incredible 11 marathon wins from 12 races, leading from start to finish to come home in a time of two hours, two minutes and 37 seconds — 58 seconds off his own world record set last year in Berlin.The women’s race got off to a slow start, but reigning champion Vivian Cheruiyot ran a fast 15th mile, before Chicago Marathon champion Kosgei took the lead and strode to her first London title with a time of 02:18:20.Kipchoge was expected to be challenged by Farah, but having kept up with the imperious Kenyan early on, Farah struggled in the latter stages.He finished over three minutes behind the winner, who is regarded by many as the greatest athlete of all time.“It feels strange to be considered the most successful elite man in racing, it’s really good and I’m very, very happy to have won four times,” Kipchoge said.“I know how to win this race and I was confident and didn’t feel it was in doubt at any point.”Farah’s pre-race preparations were marked by a dispute with fellow distance-running great Haile Gebrselassie.However, the multi-Olympic, world and European champion over 10,000 and 5,000 metres said the dispute did not act as a distraction ahead of his third London Marathon.“I didn’t think the fuss affected my run and I wasn’t distracted by the build up,” Farah said. “It was all about London today and so I put my head down, did my best.“I don’t regret anything I said and I respect the race.”In the women’s race, three-times winner Mary Keitany was the favourite with the field going for the women’s only record — without the aid of male pacemakers — set by Keitany in London in 2017.Keitany, however, never troubled Chicago Marathon champion Kosgei and last year’s winner Cheruiyot out in front, finishing down in fifth, 2:38 slower than Kosgei.Kosgei broke clear of Cheruiyot to win having ran the fastest second half of a marathon ever.“To smash my personal best is all I could to ask for,” Kosgei said. “I always get tempted to go with the leaders, but now I run better in the second half so I held back and that worked for me.”last_img read more