The Uniting Financial Services balance sheet of $1 billion dollars, which includes retained earnings of $122 million dollars in June of this year supports all investor funds lodged. Uniting Financial Services is also the holder of Australian Financial Service License No. 292186, requiring it to meet capital and liquidity balance sheet reporting covenants on a monthly basis.
In addition to the balance sheet of Uniting Financial Services, the substantial assets and resources of The Uniting Church in Australia Property Trust (NSW) underwrite all investments held by individual investors with Uniting Financial Services.
UFS has a diverse range of investments made up of first mortgage secured commercial property and church lending, investment grade and liquid fixed interest securities, direct property investments in the capital cities of Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, cash held with the four major Australian banks and investments in the listed securities on the Australian stock market.
As at June 2010, Uniting Financial Services (UFS) had more than $1.1 billion in funds under management, plus retained capital of $58 million.
Investments by Uniting Church organisations constitute approximately 56% of our funds under management, currently totalling $655 million. Other investors from our Community of Faith provide approximately 17% of our funds under management, with a current value of around $197 million. These investments are underwritten by the substantial assets and resources of The Uniting Church in Australia Property Trust (NSW), the body constituted to hold the property assets of the Uniting Church in Australia, Synod of NSW and the ACT, which is conservatively valued at $5 billion dollars. Retained capital, deferred dividends and borrowings make up the balance to our total of $1.1 billion in funds under management.
The sole beneficiary of the capital of Uniting Financial Services is The Uniting Church in Australia, Synod of NSW and the ACT ('Synod'), which in itself has a significant financial position and revenue base.
We are not an Authorised Deposit-taking Institution and not a bank. However by having an AFSL, Uniting Financial Services is able to provide general financial product advice to wholesale and retail investors for non-cash payment products. Our investors can be assured that they are dealing with finance professionals, as all representatives of the AFSL are required to obtain minimum training standards as outlined in ASIC Regulatory Guide 146.
Uniting Financial Services does not benefit from the Australian Government guarantee on funds deposited with Authorised Deposit-taking Institutions. However, as our non-Uniting Church investments are underwritten by the significant value and security of The Uniting Church in Australia Property Trust (NSW), our investors can remain assured on the security of their investment.
Uniting Financial Services would be pleased to extend our service to other Synods of The Uniting Church in Australia so that they too can benefit from our products, services and our experience in managing the financial needs of church organisations. These benefits are likely to include significant cost savings, as our products and services are provided with no transaction or maintenance fees.
Uniting Financial Services' asset weights are determined every two years via our asset allocation review with the assistance of actuarial consultants. Determining the optimal asset allocation is an important piece of work so the maximum distribution can be made to the Synod of NSW and the ACT, and Uniting Financial Services can increase assets under management.
Uniting Financial Services' portfolio is income producing with low volatility, to deliver a stable distribution to the Uniting Church. Our professional management team works to balance a complex set of factors, including changing demographics, which can affect our funding base and investment decisions, and is guided by a highly experienced Board as well as the policies and principles of The Uniting Church in Australia, Synod of NSW and the ACT.
Yes. Uniting Financial Services business processes and decisions reflect our purpose to provide financial leadership and support for Uniting Church organisations.
As part of the Uniting Church, Uniting Financial Services adheres to the ethical investment principles and guidelines of the Synod of NSW and the ACT, which require that our investment decisions are considerate of the needs of all of our investors, the community and the environment.
As a responsible member of the financial services community, Uniting Financial Services also carefully assesses applications for loans by Uniting Church organisations and other borrowers to ensure that they are not placing themselves at risk through their borrowings.
Uniting Financial Services provides home loans for Ministers and other eligible Uniting Church staff. Home loans currently have a maximum value of $350,000 or 85% LVR (loan to value ratio). Depending on the circumstances, Uniting Financial Services may be able to consider an application in excess of this, provided that the normal LVR is met.
If you have any questions about home loans, contact our Relationship Team on 1300 133 673 or see home loans for more information.
After more than 80 years in servicing the financial needs of Uniting Church organisations, Uniting Financial Services has a strong understanding of church mission. Our role is to support the delivery of mission and projects with professional funds management and financial products and services.
Uniting Financial Services is committed to behaving in the best interests of Uniting Church organisations. Our commitment to church mission is tempered with responsible lending practices, and all applications for loans are assessed on their financial capacity as much as their purpose. This is to ensure that church organisations are not placing themselves at financial risk and can comfortably afford to repay a loan. Financial statements including UR2s are used to make these assessments, however in contrast to other financial institutions, in some rare instances other income may be taken into consideration.
It is important that every loan application is assessed individually. Our Relationship Team is available to discuss borrowing enquiries by telephone or face to face. Simply call us on 1300 133 673 or see the borrowing section on our website for more information.