Santa Barbara County employees signs 2 for multistrategy real assets portfolios

Santa Barbara County (Calif.) Employees' Retirement System hired Cohen & Steers and Nuveen Asset Management to run about $67 million each in multistrategy real assets portfolios, said a news release emailed by Ellen Hung, assistant CEO at the retirement system.

The $2.8 billion pension fund conducted an invitation-only search for managers in June following a real-return structure analysis in April. The goal "was to identify strategies that would provide a return stream that is not highly correlated to traditional assets, and meaningful diversification during periods of rising inflation and/or inflation expectations," the news release said.

The portfolio changes included terminations of commodities managers BlackRock (BLK) and Mount Lucas Management, which ran $19 million and $44 million, respectively; infrastructure manager RARE Infrastructure, $85 million; and natural resources manager State Street Global Advisors, $73 million.

In its news release, the pension fund said: "SBCERS appreciates the service of Mount Lucas and RARE and would consider both firms again in future searches. SBCERS continues to appreciate their ongoing relationships with BlackRock and SSgA in other mandates in the portfolio." Portfolio sizes were not immediately available.

Investment consultant RVK assisted.