2020 Washington Roundtable

Mar 2nd - Mar 5th 2020
The Watergate Hotel
Washington, D.C.

The 2020 Roundtable for Corporate Funds & Insurance Portfolios will address opportunities to enhance risk-return propositions, diversify away from persistent market risks, and adapt to an uncertain global regulatory and political environment. 

Download the 2019 Agenda for Asset Allocators

Members of AII, please visit here for the AII member agenda, members of III, please visit here for the III member agenda.

Advisory Board
2019 Topics

Diversifying Away From Credit Risk

This late in the cycle, credit risk seems to be on most asset allocators’ minds – and nowhere is that concern more prevalent than for corporate and insurance portfolios. 

Hear practitioners and experts discuss the ubiquitous topic of late cycle credit investing and, perhaps more importantly, how to think about diversifying away from credit risk in the current environment.

Not Your Mother’s Diversification

This late in the market cycle, many allocators are weighing means to maximize diversification – through uncorrelated strategies, tail risk hedging strategies, and more – in 2019 and beyond. 

Overlay programs are rare in corporate and insurance portfolios, but has the time come to consider them more broadly? What are allocators doing to gain exposure that is uncorrelated to equity market beta? 

Hear from peers in both the corporate pension and insurance portfolio spheres share their diverse perspectives, approaches, and concerns.

Not Your Father’s Emerging Markets  

Long thought to be the driving force behind global growth, emerging markets continue to face the challenges that a strong dollar and a volatile market environment bring. 

What do the latest economic and geopolitical developments mean for your emerging market portfolio? How should you think about an ascendant China – or a new Brazilian government? Which geographies and vehicles are worth the risk?

Not Your Brother’s Fixed Income 2.0

Interest rates are higher, the yield curve is flatter. Is the risk-reward trade-off changing for fixed income? In the current environment, the case for dynamic fixed income strategies is becoming more compelling. Is there a fixed income 2.0 for corporate and insurance investors? What avenues are asset allocators embracing beyond the tried and true? Hear from peers and experts on the best ways to maximize yield within your risk tolerance profile.

Crisis Mode: Changes to the Pension Landscape and What That Means for Investors

Corporate pensions are – on average – better funded than they were a few years ago. The same is not true for the public sector. Dive deep on the differences in both structure and management and the implications for both plan sponsors, employees, and insurers. 

Trade Exposure

We are undisuptedly in a trade war. What now – both in the long-term of short-term for those whose portfolios are exposed to global markets? 

You hear all the high level theatrics – and your anxiety hears them too – but what are the second order of consequences? Real assets, currency, energy, and other commodities? Is it time to rebalance your emerging market allocation – or rethink a critical take? 

Can You Predict Innovative Technological Trends?  

What are the characteristics – and leading indicators – of innovative technological trends? And what are their implications on financial markets? Join us for a look on the most forward-thinking technologies, their characteristics, and if, just if, they are predictable. 

What Really Goes Into Underwriting a Bankruptcy?

What are the key considerations in a corporate bankruptcy underwriting process? When exploring potential partners, what questions should allocators be equipped with? 

Join us for a walk-through of what it really means to take a company through bankruptcy – and how that understanding can better arm allocators when assessing partners. Cliff notes: it’s harder, takes longer, and is much more expensive than you think it’s going to be.

Managing the Performance Impact of Cash Drag

As interest rates normalize, cash-drag becomes a more important concern for corporate and insurance investors. What approaches and vehicles can and should be used to manage the performance impact of cash-drag, without sacrificing liquidity? 

Hear from experts and peers on the benefits and drawbacks of overnight ETFs, BDCs, liquid SPACs, and other short-duration acronyms. 

A Global Approach to Pension Management

There are many ways to fry a fish, and many ways to manage a pension. Hear from a newly-minted chief investment officer on the structural implications of managing a global pension with a focus on global enterprise risk. 

Private Equity Returns, Public Equity Liquidity. Is It Possible?

The return expectations for private equity have made the asset class a darling of many institutional portfolios, with no sign of stopping. However, the case is different for corporate and insurance investors. 

How do you gain access to private equity-like returns, without the structural and liquidity challenges that are innate in the asset class? Or at the very least while mitigating these challenges? Hear from practitioners on innovations that might thread the long-term investment needle. 

The Department of Labor

The fiduciary rule is dead. What now – for both plan sponsors and plan participants? What implications does the decision have for plan sponsors’ relationships with partners? 

Hear the latest DOL digest so that you can effectively prepare and adapt to a new age of financial regulation – beyond the daily soundbites. 

Why In The World Would Any Company Want To Go Public?

We all know that the number of publically listed companies is shrinking – and many argue that a rich private equity market is to blame. But if you dive deep into the trend, there is more going on than meets the eye on a white paper title. 

What are the regulatory and reporting metrics contributing to the trend? What are the implications to diversification? With corporate defined benefit shrinking and defined contribution growing, who is going to buy private assets?

Are You Ready for Maximum Pressure? Investing in Today’s Geopolitical Environment…

Geopolitical uncertainty has spelled anxiety and confusion for many. As an investor, how should you react? Even more importantly, should you react at all? 

Hear data-driven updates on the top geopolitical risks – and what they mean for your portfolio.

…And So What? Chief Investment Officers Respond

In response to the prior session, we will anchor geopolitical pressure in investing reality. How will chief investment officers tackle the investing implications of today’s geopolitical environment? Including:

  • Increased volatility
  • The strength of the dollar
  • Energy market pressure
  • Domestic markets vs. emerging markets 

Interest Rates Risk x Longevity Risk

In case you missed it (you didn’t), a change to the interest rate environment is at the top of investors’ anxiety list. Perhaps a close second is longevity risk – particularly if you are a plan sponsor. 

What are the implications of this convergence on your portfolio, your fixed income strategy, and your plan? Hear from experts in both arenas discuss and share approaches.

Accumulation x De-cumulation

Concerns over a public market downturn, a new interest rate regime, and a shift in the risk-reward trade-off may concern institutional investors – but it terrifies (or should terrify) the generations of individual inching closer to plan termination by the day. 

Whether you’re a millennial who plans to spend nothing to retire at 50, or a baby boomer whose pension benefit has been cut, the odds are that you’re under-diversified by institutional standards. 

What’s a plan sponsor to do? Discuss the latest thinking regarding defined contribution innovation, focusing on adding diversification, increasing income, and/or lowering volatility through the accumulation and de-cumulation journey.

Climate Change x Exposure

Yes, we’re going there, but it’s not quite what you think. For insurance providers, climate change and extreme weather are realities both on the underwriting side – and on the investment side. 

Hear from practitioners and experts on why and how. 

Crypto? Institutional Punchline. Block chain? Now We’re Talking. 

If you were here last year, you heard a pitch on why institutional investors cannot ignore cryptocurrency. To hazard a guess, many of you listened and then proceeded to ignore it.

What can’t you ignore? The ways in which block-chain will profoundly change many elements of the financial industry. Hear how investors can take a calculated leap and gain exposure to the block-chain revolution. 


Complimentary registration is limited to investment executives from corporate pensions funds, insurance funds, and investment consultants. If you are a member of the Alternative Investor Institute, please register here, Institutional Investor Institute members should register here.



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