Searches and Hires

Wyoming permanent funds board signs Harvest for MLPs, Cohen & Steers for preferred stock

Wyoming State Loan and Investment Board, Cheyenne, hired Harvest Fund Advisors to run a total of $660 million in master limited partnership portfolios among eight funds the board oversees, said Patrick Fleming, chief investment officer.

The board also hired Cohen & SteersCapital Management to run a total of $75 million in a preferred stock strategy among three funds.

The hiring of Harvest Fund Advisors is the result a shortlist search following the creation of new target asset allocations the board adopted in April 2017, which included adding MLPs. Those targets to MLPs are 6% each in the $3.4 billion Common School Permanent Land Fund, $570 million Hathaway Scholarship Endowment Fund and $118 million Higher Education Endowment Fund; 5% in the $83 million Pool A Investment Account; 4.5% each in the $7.2 billion Permanent Mineral Trust Fund, $188 million Permanent Land Fund and $21 million University Permanent Land Fund; and 3% in the $1.9 Workers' Compensation Fund.

The hiring of Cohen & Steers, also the result of a shortlist search, came as a result of new targets to preferred stock of 2% each in the Common School Permanent Land Fund, Higher Education Endowment Fund and Pool A Investment Account. Cohen & Steers' strategy utilizes "both retail and institutional preferreds (share classes), along with contingent convertibles," according to board meeting documents.

The individual amounts of the portfolios in each of the funds was not provided. Funding comes from rebalancing and also the December termination of Lazard Asset Management from a $325 million active domestic all-cap equity portfolio. The Permanent Mineral Trust Fund, Permanent Land Fund and University Permanent Land Fund had dropped their domestic equity allocations to 10% each from 16.7% each and the Common School Permanent Land Fund, Hathaway Scholarship Endowment Fund and Higher Education Endowment Fund each dropped their target to broad domestic equities to 8% from 16.7%.

The board also oversees the investment management of the $5.6 billion State Agency Pool of operating funds.

Investment consultant RVK assisted.