The Maryland State Retirement and Pension System is the latest fund to release its investment performance data for fiscal year 2013-14, and the fund returned over 14 percent for the year, the System’s second consecutive year of double-digit investment returns. From the Baltimore Post-Examiner:
Maryland’s pension system for state employees and teachers had another strong investment performance for the fiscal year which ended June 30 earning 14.37%, bringing the value of the portfolio to $45.4 billion, a gain of more than $5 billion.
It was the second year in a row of strong performance due to sharp upturns in stocks, according to Chief Investment Officer Melissa Moye. The fund exceeded its target of 7.7% and its market benchmark of 14.16% — what its basket of assets would have been expected to earn.
The System is still in a hole due to its unfunded liabilities, which sit at about $20 billion. But the major credit rating agencies, even while weary of the liabilities, have commented on the improved health of the system of late as the effects of several reform measures have been positively felt. From the BPE:
These liabilities are consistently mentioned as a negative financial factor by all three bond rating agencies as they did earlier this month.
But the three New York agencies also note the improvements made in Maryland’s pension outlook after employee contributions were raised and benefits reduced by the legislature in 2011.
“The funds annual returns continue to reflect the strong market environment that has prevailed since the end of the credit crisis,” State Treasurer Nancy Kopp, chair of the pension board, said in a statement.
Typically, the System released investment performance figures by asset category. This year, the system only released aggregate returns and did not specify returns by asset category, although those figures may be released to the public eventually.
The S&P 500 returned around 21 percent for fiscal year 2014.