Wednesday, September 28, 2011

#Lab11 Labour Housing Group/Co-op/SERA fringe

After the TULO fringe on Sunday I went with UNISON housing members to the Labour Housing Group meeting which was held jointly with the Co-operative Party and SERA.  It was called "Homes for the Future". It was chaired by Jacky Peacock OBE, Vice Chair LHG; Speakers: Alison Seabeck MP, Shadow Housing Minister and Leonie Cooper, SERA.  We were late but listened to the Q&A.   

Alison mentioned that she was looking into whether Council pension funds could be used to fund new homes.  This is a potentially a sensible idea in my view since we need to invest in so called "alternative assets" such as property and it should be a "safe" long term investment ideally suited to help match pension fund liabilities.  This has been talked about for years and should have legs but I think advisers are cautious about such "direct" investment since the days of Arthur Scargill and the Cowan decision.  I think that times have moved on.  This is not an "ethical" investment issue. 
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