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PennSERS hires NEPC as real estate consultant, returns 6.5% in 2016

Pennsylvania State Employees' Retirement System, Harrisburg, hired NEPC as the $26 billion pension fund's real estate consultant, spokeswoman Pamela Hile said in an email.

The decision was made at Wednesday's board meeting.

The new five-year contract with NEPC will begin June 1. The contract with current real estate consultant, The Townsend Group, expires June 30.

Ms. Hile confirmed that Townsend had submitted a bid. Joe Olszak, Townsend's chief operating officer, did not return a phone call by press time.

Separately, PennSERS announced it returned a net 6.5% on investments in 2016, compared to net returns of 8.1% and 8.6% for the 25 and 30 years ended Dec. 31, respectively.

Returns by asset class for the year ended Dec. 31 were global equities, 8.4%; private equity, 6.8%; fixed income, 5.6%; hedge funds, 4.2%; real estate, 3.2%; and cash, 0.6%.