Sexual Harassment is Institutions’ Top Emerging Due Diligence Target: IA Survey

Institutional investors surveyed by IA recently on the importance they attach to four ascendant asset-manager engagement due-diligence criteria indicated that they place the most importance on managers’ records on sexual harassment, followed in descending order of importance by their records on environmental, social and governance (ESG), cybersecurity and diversity. In response to a brief thought …

Use of Disparate Benchmarks by Public Pensions Muddies Fee Comparisons

There is little uniformity in the use of benchmarks for different asset classes among public pension plans, according to a new report from the Center for State and Local Government Excellence (SLGE) and the Boston College Center for Retirement Research (CRR). Given that pension plans pay their asset managers based on the expectation that they will beat …

As Investors Embrace ESG, Inconsistent Analysis Questioned

As socially responsible investing continues an inexorable march toward the investment mainstream, some institutions are questioning the consistency or uniformity of environmental, social and governance (ESG) analysis, and how this analysis is adopted across investment managers. Some are questioning more deeply, also, the degree to which asset management firms meet certain ESG criteria for themselves …

OCIO Assets on Track to Climb by One-Third in One Year

Total reported outsourced chief investment officer (OCIO) assets managed by U.S.-domiciled firms, listed by Tucson, Ariz.-based executive recruitment firm Charles Skorina & Company, have grown 16% in just six months (October 2017 – March 2018) to now total approximately $1.97 trillion. By extrapolation, those assets under management are tracking to grow one-third over a full …

Alaska’s Comp. Plan: A Fitting Model for Public Fund In-House Asset Management?  

The recent approval of new incentive compensation guidelines for investment and other staff by the board of the Alaska Permanent Fund Corporation (APFC) runs the risk of critical news headlines—a perennial risk faced by publicly funded investing institutions when they move to compensate financial-market professionals on staff competitively.  But so far criticism of the initiative …

Colorado’s FPPA Reaps Rewards of Long Investment Governance Revamp

Staff members of the approximately $4.5 billion Fire & Police Pension Association of Colorado (FPPA) are feeling pretty good about themselves currently. Why? In 2009, an informal level of questioning, second-guessing and  hypothesizing among board and staff members regarding the fund’s longstanding, heavily-consultant-driven asset manager hiring process coalesced into formal action to change that process …

MOSERS Board Taps New Chairwoman; ED Expected in June

The Missouri State Employees’ Retirement System (MOSERS) has appointed Crystal Wessing as Chairwoman of the Board of Trustees of the $8.5 billion Jefferson City-based retirement fund, according to a released statement from MOSERS. Separately, the system is also now in the final phase of a recruitment effort for a new executive director, which it expects …

More Power to the CEO!

Governance Guru Applauds CalPERS’ Move The decision last week by the board of the $350 billion California Public State Retirement System (CalPERS) to change its governance policy to make the CEO solely responsible for hiring, evaluating and, if necessary, terminating the chief investment officer, sits very well with Rick Funston, managing partner at Funston Advisory …