19 Related parties
The Group defines the following as related parties to the Group: subsidiaries of Swiss Re Ltd, entities in which the Group has significant influence, pension plans, members of the Board of Directors (BoD) and the Group Executive Committee (EC) and their close family members, and entities which are directly and indirectly controlled by members of governing bodies of the Group and their close family members.
As part of the consolidation process, transactions between Swiss Re Ltd and subsidiaries are eliminated in consolidation and are not disclosed in the notes.
As of 31 December 2018 and 2019, the Group’s investment in mortgages and other loans included USD 373 million and USD 4 million, respectively, of loans due from employees, and USD 212 million and nil, respectively, due from officers. These loans generally consist of mortgages offered at variable and fixed interest rates.
Contributions made to defined benefit pension plans and post-retirement benefit plans are disclosed in Note 16 “Benefit plans”. Plan assets of the defined benefit pension plans include Swiss Re common stock of USD 4 million (0.1% of total plan assets) and USD 3 million (0.04% of total plan assets) as of 31 December 2018 and 2019, respectively.
The total number of shares, options and related instruments held by members of the BoD and the Group EC, as well as closely related persons, amounts to less than 1% of the shares issued by Swiss Re Ltd. None of the members of the BoD and the Group EC has any significant business connection with Swiss Re Ltd or any of its Group companies. The Board member Susan L. Wagner is also a Board member of BlackRock, Inc. BlackRock, Inc. acts as an external asset manager for the Group.
Share in earnings and dividends received from equity-accounted investees for the years ended 31 December, were as follows: