Report: NYC Pension Funds’ Investment Boards Could Soon Be Merged

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New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer is planning on proposing an overhaul to the way the city’s pension funds select outside investment managers, according to a report in the New York Daily News.

The proposal involves merging the investment committees of the city’s five major pension funds into one “umbrella” board.

Stringer will make the proposal next week, according to the report.

Details from NY Daily News:

Stringer’s plan, according to several people briefed on it, will call for consolidating separate investment committees of the police, fire, teachers and other municipal union pension funds into a single combined umbrella group. That group would meet only four times a year, thus doing away with the current system, where the five major pension funds each hold their own separate monthly meetings to select investment managers.

The trustees of each fund, however, would still vote separately on whether to park their money with a particular firm.

Stringer declined to comment on his proposal until he releases it in the next few days.

But he has told trustees of the funds that it will streamline an archaic and bureaucratic process that requires his staff to attend five separate investment meetings every month — 55 meetings a year — even though 95% of the investment decisions are the same for each fund. The change will give the controller’s staff more time to spend on monitoring funds and reducing fees, Stringer has claimed.

Labor leaders who sit on all the pensions’ boards have lined up in recent days behind the proposal, as has Mayor de Blasio, thus assuring its passage.

Collectively, the city’s five pension systems manage about $160 billion in assets.

 

Photo by Tim (Timothy) Pearce via Flickr CC License

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