Annual Report 2014



Uncertainty in the economic operating environment will continue. We can expect to see volatility in the capital markets also during the economic year 2015. The major monetary policy decisions by the ECB will, when correctly allocated, promote the recovery of the European economy and market development. At the same time, the long-standing rise in share prices and the low interest rate level will make the investment environment very challenging. The profitable and secure investment of pension assets requires careful diversification across different asset classes and skilful risk management. Varma’s strong solvency gives the company excellent opportunities to succeed, also in an uncertain environment, in targeting a return that secures pension benefits and a reasonable contribution level. 

Growth is expected to remain strong in the U.S. and reasonable in emerging countries. The declining price of oil is contributing to global economic growth.   

Finland’s economic situation remains difficult. In 2015, the economy is expected to pick up very slightly. For Finland, it is crucial that the export markets pick up. The falling price of oil and the weakening euro promote both Finland’s exports and the growth of its main markets. 

Improving the price competitiveness of Finland’s exports requires reasonable pay increases, which, however, means low growth in purchasing power and feeble demand in the domestic markets. The possibilities to increase purchasing power by relaxing taxation are limited. Economic development in the near future will be characterised by the adjustment of public finances and the ongoing change in the structures of trade and industry. Finland is struggling with growing debt, sizable sustainability gap, and dwindling growth. The balancing act between these will continue for years to come. 

The private sector earnings-related pension system is on a strong financial footing, and it offers the insured stable defined-benefit pensions. Varma aims to be a forerunner in earnings-related pensions as well as a reliable partner to its clients in earnings-related pension insurance. Varma highlights pension companies’ responsibility for professionally handling investment risk management and supports the sector’s efficiency and transparency and the prerequisites for competition. Earnings-related pension insurance companies must handle the task set out for them as efficiently as possible for current and future pension recipients.