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Scottish Widows’ £109bn mandate fight down to BlackRock and Schroders

Race trackBlackRock and Schroders are frontrunners to manage £109bn for Lloyds Banking Group’s Scottish Widows Investment Partnership funds, Bloomberg reports.

The London-based bank is set to make its decision in the third quarter of this year, after it invited bids for its contract at the start of this year after ending the agreement it had with Standard Life Aberdeen, Bloomberg adds.

Earlier this year, Standard Life Aberdeen hit back against Lloyds for terminating its investment management arrangement saying the merged company is not in competition with the bank.

Lloyds had originally seen Standard Life as a rival for the SWIP assets.

SLA’s statement said: “SLA has informed LBG that it does not agree that, following the merger of Aberdeen Asset Management and Standard Life, SLA was in material competition in the UK with LBG and that, therefore, SLA does not consider that LBG, Scottish Widows or their respective affiliates has the right to terminate the [investment management arrangements].”

BlackRock oversaw $6.3trn (£4.7trn) as at 31 December 2017 while Schroders manages £426.1bn as at 31 March 2018.

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White paper — recording sickness absence

The latest figures from the Department for Work and Pensions illustrate that sickness absence is still a major cost to businesses, with an annual bill for sick pay and associated costs to employers of £9bn. This paper from Jelf Employee Benefits looks at the importance of recording sickness absence for any employee health strategy and how this can be carried out in an efficient manner to reduce absence, improve employee engagement and drive up profits.

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