What you need to con­sider when in­ves­ting your pillar 3a in securities 

You've already decided to invest your pillar 3a in securities and you know the reasons for saving with securities. All there is to do now is find the right mix of shares, real estate, bonds, commodities etc. In banking jargon, this mix is known as the “investment strategy”, and determines how your money should be invested in such a way that it works for you.

What you need to consider when investing your pillar 3a in securities

What determines your 
   investment strategy?

  1. Your aims: what is more important to you, do you want to achieve the highest possible return or the highest possible security?
  2. The time horizon available to you: do you have a long time left until you turn 65 (the pension age for men) or 64 (the pension age for women*) or do you only have a few years to work with? Or are you planning on withdrawing your pension assets early, for example to buy your own home?
  3. Is sustainable development something close to your heart, and do you want to only support sustainable companies with your pillar 3a?


 *from 2028, the retirement age of 65 years will apply for women and men

What kind of investor are you?

You can find out what kind of investor you are by answering some simple questions directly online in frankly. Different financial institutions call their investment strategies by different things. At frankly we call them security-conscious, cautious, balanced, ambitious, opportunity-oriented.


The main difference between these strategies is in their equity weighting.

Because shares are subjected to comparatively large price fluctuations, this influences both the expected return and the risk which your pillar 3a credit balance is exposed to:


  • Do you want less risk and fewer fluctuations? Then you need a lower equity weighting. However, this reduces your potential return.
  • Do you want the chance of higher returns in the future? Then it makes sense to have a higher equity weighting.


Here’s a small tip as well: for pillar 3a investment products, the equity weighting is usually given as a number in the name of the product.



Bei frankly hast du die fünf folgenden Anlagestrategien zur Auswahl:


frankly gives you the following five investment strategies to choose from:


ZKB_frankly_contentseite_Strategien_1280x310px_201117PrudentSafety is a top priority for you. You want to avoid risks and losses. You prefer steady asset growth with only very slight fluctuations.CautiousYou tend towards safety and only take manageable risks. You accept small fluctuations in assets.BalancedYou are risk-tolerant, but you do not take major risks.You accept slight fluctuations in assets.AmbitiousYou are more open to risk and are willing to take increased risks. You accept moderate fluctuations in assets.Focused onopportunitiesYou are very open to risk and are not worried about losses. You see risks as opportunities. You accept considerablefluctuations in assets.

What equity weighting 
        is right for me?

The equity weighting depends on how willing you are to accept possible fluctuations (risk) in expectation of a future return. Unfortunately there’s no way of having high potential returns without accepting the risk.

Time is your friend

The longer you can invest your money for, the more you chance you have of evening out price fluctuations. This is because previous experience shows us that falls in share prices have always been balanced out by recoveries, though prices may take some time to recover.


Let’s take a look back in time: 

Falls in share prices always balance themselves out.

Inspired by: www.cash.ch


Developments on the Swiss Market Index over 30 years

ZKB_frankly_contentseite_gesammelt_605x510px_201026_jdh0000006'0008'00010'00012'00002'4'June 1998June 201815 January 2015:Removal of CHF/EUR exchange rate floor16 October 1989:Black Friday on the US stock market24 September 2001: Recovery after 9/11

«Active» or «passive» - what do these terms mean?

In the names of a lot of financial products, you can often see the designations “active”, “passive” or perhaps also “index”. These terms describe how the individual investment products are set up and administered:

Active: These investment strategies and products are administered by portfolio managers who pick certain types of securities and buy and sell them at the most advantageous possible times. The aim is to beat a certain market index, e.g. the SMI (Swiss Market Index), meaning to achieve a stronger investment performance.

Passive or index: The aim of this investment strategy is to reflect the developments of a certain market index as closely as possible. The investment products are put together by people, but then “automatically” track an index or a bundle of multiple indexes. The aim is not to achieve a better investment performance than the index, but also not a worse performance either.

How to see at a glance whether a financial product is right for you: 

If you know what is meant by equity weighting, index and active/passive, then you can already tell what an investment product is all about from its name:

Example 1: Moderate 45 Responsible

Moderate 45 Active stands for a moderate investment strategy, meaning somewhere in the middle between low and high risk, 45 refers to the proportion of shares contained in the product (45% here). Responsible stays for the sustainable approach of this fund. Furthermore it's an active managed fund, what means that a portfolio manager is trying to beat the market.

Example 2: Extreme 95 Index

Extreme 95 Index stands for an opportunity-oriented investment strategy, i.e. one that is very open to taking risks, 95 refers to an equity weighting of 95% and index means that the fund follows a market index. Please note that this investment product massively exceeds the maximum equity weighting allowed in occupational pension schemes of 50%.

 Can I only have one investment 
strategy or is it better to have several?

You can devise various different strategies for your pillar 3a, i.e. with various timeframes. This opens up a wide range of exciting possible combinations. For example, you can invest a pillar 3a following a high risk strategy and then a year later also invest another pillar 3a while being more security-conscious. This way you can reduce your risk or create extra opportunities for higher returns. However, if you are pursuing multiple investment strategies, please note that it is best to have one pillar 3a per strategy. This also gives you maximum flexibility.


All these terms can be somewhat confusing at first, but once you’ve looked at it in more detail, it all becomes quite simple. The key factors in deciding which investment strategy is right for you are your time horizon and how much risk you are willing to accept for a potential return.

More about the topic

Everything about pillar 3a

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