Posted on Sep 30, 2021 at 7:54 p.m.
The Allianz Global Investors (GI) structured funds affair is the first victim. The German insurer Allianz announced this evening the replacement with immediate effect of Jacqueline Hunt, the head of its asset management. As of this Friday, she will be replaced on the group’s management committee by Andreas Wimmer, the current Managing Director of Allianz’s life insurance activities. He will resume his duties at the head of life activities in the United States and of the management companies Allianz GI in Europe and Pimco in the United States. Both total nearly 2,500 billion euros in assets.
Officially, Jacqueline Hunt is not a fuse. She will remain “strategic consultant” to Oliver Bäte, the managing director of the first German insurer. “Jackie had signaled that she was open to a change some time ago,” Olier Bäte said in a statement. She has been an excellent member of the Board of Directors and we are particularly proud of Pimco’s excellent performance during her tenure, as well as the success of Allianz Global Investors and our life business in the United States. “
Surveys in the United States and Germany
However, his departure seemed sealed after the recent setbacks of the group. Allianz is the subject of investigations in the United States and in Germany, after losses of several billion euros recorded by structured funds of Allianz GI. In addition to the financial policemen of the two countries, the SEC and the BaFin, the US Department of Justice (DoJ) is looking into this case after complaints from several institutional clients. They feel they have been harmed by derivative products which suffered heavy losses during the turbulence on the financial markets in 2020.
Last week, Allianz acknowledged that he was considering “an acceleration of his succession plan” within his management, following information from the “Wall Street Journal” on the possible departure of the boss from his asset management. “These reflections are old and strategic in nature, but they also concern the asset management division, which is facing specific challenges at the moment due to the Structured Alpha affair in the United States”, admitted the group. .
Rumors of disposals
At the beginning of August, Allianz issued a warning on its results, indicating that the problems of its structured products could have “a significant impact on future financial results”. The case could cost him between 3.5 and 6.8 billion euros, including a fine of 1 to 2 billion from the DoJ, analysts at Berenberg estimate. For the moment, the insurer has not recorded any provisions in its accounts. On the other hand, he could part with life insurance portfolios in the United States and Switzerland to regain financial leeway, Bloomberg reported in recent days.