Investors Eye Diversification Potential in Asian Private Debt Mart

Interest in Asian private debt is growing. But while there are opportunities to be had, consultants suggest that investors proceed with caution. “We have observed more interest in Asia private credit than in previous years, as investors look to diversify their credit portfolios and gain access to a region which is regarded as having compelling …

CalSTRS Taps New CFO 

The California State Teachers’ Retirement System has hired Julie Underwood as its chief financial officer. Underwood, who replaces Robin Madsen who retired at the end of March, will start on July 16. Underwood joins CalSTRS from the $9.9 billion San Bernardino County Employees’ Retirement Association, a multiple-employer defined benefit pension plan, where she had been the …

Hawaii’s Controversial Options Strategy Looking Good Even after CIO’s Departure

The options strategy implemented by Vijoy Chattergy, the former chief investment officer of the $17 billion Honolulu-based Employees’ Retirement System of the State of Hawaii (HIERS), which targets equity like returns with 2/3 the volatility of equities over a full market cycle, is still performing well, even after his departure. “Today the strategy remains fully collateralized, and …

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 …

How to Build an All-Season, Real-Assets Portfolio: Practitioners Opine    

Volatile equity markets and inadequate bond yields have driven a spike in investor interest in real assets this year. Investors are building larger and more diversified real-assets allocations, or considering doing so, by adding global and sector exposure, including infrastructure, maritime and international real estate to their real asset mainstay, domestic core real estate. IA …

Illinois U. System to Replicate $5 Bn in Equities with Exchange-listed Options  

The Champaign, Illinois–based State Universities Retirement System of Illinois (SURS), with approximately $20 billion in assets under management (AUM), is using an exchange-listed options strategy to hedge what some observers perceive as a U.S. equities market on the cusp of a painful tumble, in order to beat the market. “Some option strategies can trail. But …

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 …

Canada Leads the ETF Charge

Canadian institutions are at the forefront of a growing move by institutions worldwide to integrate exchange-traded funds (ETFs) into their portfolios, according to the 2017 Canadian Exchange-Traded Funds Study, recently released by Greenwich Associates. In fact, the 52 Canadian institutions that participated in the study currently allocate an average 18.8% of their total assets to …

Amid Rising Interest Rates, Investors See Liquidity Benefit in Fixed-Income ETFs

Institutional investors are moving in increasing numbers into fixed-income exchange-traded funds (ETFs), according to a recently released Greenwich Associates study, ETFs: Valuable Versatility in a Newly Volatile Market. The heightened demand for these products is derived from insufficient liquidity in the fixed-income market as well as institutional portfolios adjusting to an environment of rising interest rates, …

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 …