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Blizzard slams East Coast, causing some offices to close

The nor'easter that hit the East Coast with snow, heavy winds and freezing rain Tuesday affected various governments, asset owners and money managers. But despite the blizzard, many offices remained open, although some firms have encouraged employees to work from home, if possible.

A note on the $50.2 billion Pennsylvania Public School Employees' Retirement System's website said that due to inclement weather, the headquarters in Harrisburg and regional offices in Lock Haven, Scranton, Fleetwood and Warminster will be closed Tuesday, while the regional offices in Ebensburg, Pittsburgh and Franklin opened three hours late.

New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie both declared a state of emergency for Tuesday, telling non-essential people to stay home. The $109.2 billion New York State Teachers' Retirement System, Albany, closed its office Tuesday, spokesman John Cardillo said in an email. It is expected to reopen Wednesday.

Matt Sweeney, spokesman for Thomas P. DiNapoli, the state comptroller and the sole trustee of the $186 billion New York State Common Retirement Fund, Albany, said in an email: “Some (office of state comptroller) staff are working and monitoring things remotely.” Mr. Sweeney added that pension fund “staff are performing mission critical tasks, including funding investments and investing short-term funds. Generally, if the markets are open, (the pension fund) is open. We don't necessarily have to be in our office.”

Connecticut's government offices are closed, with essential workers on the job, a spokesman said. This includes the office of state Treasurer Denise Nappier, principal fiduciary of the $30.1 billion Connecticut Retirement Plans & Trust Funds, Hartford.

In New York, BlackRock (BLK)'s headquarters is open, as is Goldman Sachs' and J.P. Morgan's.

Legg Mason (LM)'s Baltimore office is open, but people can work from home as needed, spokeswoman Mary Athridge said.

T. Rowe Price Group's offices in Baltimore are open, but the firm has encouraged associates to “leverage technology and work from home,” spokesman Bill Weeks said.

Bank of New York Mellon (BK)'s offices remain open and operational, spokeswoman Melissa Cassar said. But in preparation for the storm, the company invoked its business continuity plans, which included arranging for those employees in functions requiring on-site staff to stay at nearby hotels within walking distance from the office, and preparing employees to work from home or from a contingency site.

In Boston, Andrew Hopkins, spokesman for State Street Global Advisors, issued the following statement via email: “The safety of our employees is our utmost concern, and we continue to monitor the weather forecast. At this time we are business as usual. Consistent with our standard business continuity plans, we will implement contingency procedures, including work from home arrangements and the use of alternate work sites if needed.”