Washington State Board of Investment, Olympia, is reviewing its entire domestic equity program, said Nancy Calkins, senior investment officer for equity and program management. Manager searches could begin by late summer for the $37 billion fund. One passive and three active managers currently run the $12.5 billion equity component. Wilshire Associates is assisting.
Indiana State Teachers' Retirement Fund trustees, Indianapolis, are close to picking a consultant to help manage the $3.5 billion fund's transition into equities, which will include an asset allocation study and manager searches. Robert Newland, investment officer, said the consultant also will help set up a monitoring system for the fund.
Four finalists Mr. Newland declined to name will make presentations on Thursday. The consultant will be hired initially on a long-term project basis but could become a retainer consultant.
The fund also hired Seix Investment Advisors to run $25 million to $30 million in core fixed income, replacing Alpha Capital, which was terminated last year.
The IRS issued a private letter ruling Friday allowing Travelers Group Inc. to deduct the value of stock options it contributes to its profit-sharing/401(k) plan. Labor Department officials expect to issue an exemption letter from ERISA prohibited transaction regulations by the end of March, clearing the way for Travelers to contribute stock options in its 401(k) plan.
Also, a Travelers official said the company received several inquiries from large employers - including IBM Corp., GTE and Lucent Technologies - seeking information about the stock option contribution.
ICMA Retirement and Barclays Global Investors formed a strategic alliance to provide a full lineup of index funds to public sector participants in defined contribution and deferred compensation plans, said Robert Barkin, an ICMA spokesman.
Barclays will run four new index funds - 500 Stock Index, which will mimic the S&P 500 index; Mid/Small Company Index, which will duplicate the performance of the Wilshire 4500 Index; Core Bond, linked to the Lehman Brothers Aggregate Bond Index; and Overseas Index, a stock fund tied to the MSCI EAFE index. The five funds will be available June 1.