New York City Police Pension Fund to keep gun and ammo stocks
By Robert Steyer | March 7, 2013 2:28 pm
New York City Police Pension Fund will retain its $9.97 million investment in five gun and ammunition companies, according to Patrick Lynch, president of the New York City Patrolmen's Benefit Association and a member of the police pension fund board.
“We oppose criminals having guns, not law enforcement and law-abiding citizens,” Mr. Lynch said in a statement provided by Al O'Leary, a spokesman for the Patrolmen's Benefit Association. “While the social impact of pension investments can be a consideration, there is no evidence that the manufacturers of these weapons that are the tools of the trade for law enforcement have done anything improper. The pension board's primary responsibility is to make sound, financial investments.”
Mr. O'Leary, in an interview, said the pension fund board didn't take a formal vote. He said board members had been briefed by New York City Comptroller John Liu on the gun- and ammunition-related investments. Mr. Liu is the investment adviser, custodian and trustee of the five city pension funds within the $127.5 billion New York City Retirement Systems.
The $9.97 million investment in gun and ammunition companies represents a tiny portion of the $26.8 billion police pension fund, according to data provided by Connor Osetek, a spokesman for the comptroller.
Alliant Techsystems Inc. accounts for more than half of the total police pension fund's weapons investment with $5.45 million. Other pension fund investments are in Olin Corp.; Sturm, Ruger & Co. Inc.; Smith & Wesson Holding Corp.; and Forjas Taurus SA.
The $46.6 billion New York City Teachers' Retirement System voted last month to divest its $13.5 million in shares of the same five gun and ammunition companies.