NJ HF Cut Just Latest Action in Industry’s Value-For-Fees Pursuit

The New Jersey Division of Investment’s decision at the close of May to halve the state’s pension funds’ hedge fund allocation to 3% from 6% to save on asset management fees raised nary an eyebrow, viewed by the industry as just business as usual—just another fund in a long and growing list of institutional asset owners …

The Future of Obligations-Based Investing, Preserving DB Benefit Plans

Panelists at Markets Group’s Sixth Annual Texas Institutional Forum, in Austin, gathered together to tackle the pros and cons of implementing obligation-based or liability-driven investment (LDI) policies at pension funds. The discussion was predicated on the idea that the typically complicated process of administering the investments of a pension plan can be simplified, somewhat, by focusing on a fund’s …

Pension, E&F Investment Pros Cautiously Optimistic on Hedge Funds

Though just five percent (or 400) of 8,000 hedge funds (HFs) are even considered investable, according to Joe Marenda, a managing director and hedge fund specialist at Cambridge Associates, “the beauty [of hedge funds] is really in the eye of the beholder—based on portfolio need,” he said. Though institutional investors are currently holding their allocations …

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 …

MOSERS Board to New Consultant: “Show Me”

The Missouri State Employees’ Retirement System (MOSERS) has hired Verus Investments as a Board Investment Consultant (BIC) to provide investment advisory and oversight services directly to its Board of Trustees. MOSERS has asked the BIC to present a proposed asset allocation/policy portfolio to the fund’s investment committee, which the fund says Verus has done. According …

Verus Advances Ball on Emerging Manager, ESG initiative

Verus Investments, which last year kicked-off an effort to include more emerging and environmental, social and governance (ESG) managers on its approved-manager  list, is bringing  more thought to how it assists clients in identifying emerging managers and implementing their ESG mission-related initiatives, according to Eileen Neill, a managing director and senior consultant with the firm. …