Table of Contents
Issue Date: Monday, July 27, 2015
CalPERS officials want to lower the pension fund's volatility by reducing the system's 7.5% assumed rate of return over time.
As low oil and gas prices are cutting into alternative investment returns, some investors are doubling down, pouring more capital into the sector.
Two large public pension plans recently adopted new compensation plans executives hope will enable them to recruit and retain key investment professionals.
It's been five years since President Barack Obama signed the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, a far-reaching law enacted after the 2008 financial crisis that aimed to stave off future economic meltdowns.
Active money managers that pride themselves on adding value to portfolios increasingly are under fire to justify the fees they charge, and some have realized a refusal to budge will see them increasingly bypassed by investors.
China's seeming success in stopping a precipitous A-shares sell-off raises the question of whether a visible official hand could become a hallmark of a proverbial equity market with Chinese characteristics.
The heyday of equities in corporate defined benefit plans is over. Corporate pension plan allocations to equity have declined to a new low.
Comment letters on the Department of Labor's proposed fiduciary rule poured in July 21, the last day of the comment period.
Money managers have been increasing cash holdings to levels not seen since the financial crisis over volatility concerns and unease about China's equity markets.
The most significant money market fund reforms — floating net asset values, liquidity fees and gates — take effect in October 2016 and a pocket of the fixed-income exchange-traded fund market once expected to attract investors looking for on-demand liquidity has yet to significantly materialize.
Shareholders have shown increasingly strong support for leadership of corporations in voting in favor of directors, while at the same time they have firmly embraced proxy access, enabling them to rebel by nominating their own members to corporate boards, a study by Ernst & Young LLP's Center for Board Matters found.
This month, the London Pensions Fund Authority and Lancashire County Pension Fund said they will go ahead with a partnership that aims to reduce costs and increase investment opportunities.
While investors and consultants are putting pressure on money management firms to justify the fees charged on committed capital, there are times when charges are acceptable, sources said.
As oil and gas prices continue to fall, much of the capital being raised today is for distressed energy investments.
The Internal Revenue Service's unexpected decision July 9 to ban lump-sum payments to retirees has plan sponsors keeping one eye open for further regulation but still considering those payouts for other plan participants.
Farmland returns as of June 30, 2015, posted their lowest quarterly rate since 2010. Longer term, the asset class has performed well.
Private equity has come under renewed scrutiny over the issue of fees and transparency.
The U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Glenn Tibble et al. vs. Edison International et al. could lead sponsors of defined contribution plans to take extreme actions ranging from cutting back on investment fund options to abandoning plans altogether to avoid litigation risk. Both extremes would be a mistake.
A few decades ago, endowments and foundations were rarely in the public spotlight for reasons other than their core mission. Now, they are in the glare — a harsh one, sometimes — of regulators, watchdogs, media and constituents.
Currency markets have been very volatile in the past year, with the U.S. dollar exhibiting its strongest rally on a trade-weighted basis in over 10 years. For U.S. pension executives with substantial international investment portfolio exposures, the key question is whether this rally is in its ninth inning or closer to the fifth, as a prolonged U.S.