Vermont Treasurer James H. Douglas is looking for ways to increase state retirement system investments within the state, he said today. Mr. Douglas is meeting this week with Wilshire Associates, investment consultant for two of the funds, to discuss how much of the funds' assets should be invested locally. After studying Wilshire's recommendations, Mr. Douglas will present his proposal to the three retirement boards in September.
At the end of March, the Vermont Teachers' Retirement System had $1.9 million of its $776.3 million in local investments; the Vermont State Employees' Retirement System had $1.8 million of its $701.1 million within the state, and the Vermont Municipal Employees Retirement System had $1 million of $100.8 million invested locally.
Maryland State Retirement Systems, Baltimore, with $23 billion in assets, might invest $100 million in Greenway Partners, a fund that uses shareholder activism to enhance returns in undervalued companies, confirmed Arthur N. Caple Jr., chairman of the fund's investment committee. The fund's investment committee meets again July 11, and may finalize the investment then.
The investment will not be treated as a separate asset class, but as part of its equity investments. The state fund heard presentations from two other firms, but chose Greenway because it offers separate accounts.
Robert Bosch Corp., Broadview, Ill., is considering a search for its first international equity manager. The manager probably would get 5% to 10% of the company's $120 million in defined benefit assets over time, said Karen Gallivan, treasurer. The new asset class still needs board approval, she added. A decision on a search is expected in the fourth quarter. Towers Perrin is assisting
Generale Bank of Brussels will buy about 51% of Harbor Capital Management, enhancing the bank's money management expertise.
Definitive agreements are pending, but Generale Bank is expected to pay about 1% of assets, or $50 million, for its stake. The bank also has a seven-year option to increase its stake up to 75%. Harbor employees will retain a significant share of the equity capital, with significant back-end payments for Harbor managing directors. Harbor manages about $5 billion in assets.
Harbor will serve as a North American platform for U.S. equity and fixed-income products, said Frederick Thorne, a Harbor founder and chairman. He said the sale will provide the midsized manager with the money to become more global, a capital-intensive undertaking.
United Asset Management formed a Paris-based subsidiary, Expertise Asset Management, to offer global bond and European equity products.
The start-up firm, which is 80% owned by UAM, is staffed by four former professionals from Finagest, Paris. There are plans to hire two additional portfolio managers. Hervé de Lattre, Expertise's chairman, said the firm hopes to tap growing institutional demand for international investments.
State of Connecticut Retirement & Trust Funds, Hartford, put RCM Capital Management on its watch list, said state Treasurer Christopher Burnham, sole trustee of the $15 billion fund. RCM was placed on the watch list because of personnel changes, he said. Connecticut hired RCM in spring 1996 to manage a $150 million equity portfolio. RCM officials were unavailable for comment.
The Russell indexes' annual ``reconstitution'' process resulted in 450 companies moving into the Russell 3000 index, replacing 324 companies that were deleted, according to the final list released today by Frank Russell. Other companies were eliminated through mergers or bankruptcies and were not replaced until the reconstitution process. This year, 251 companies that moved into the index were recent IPOs, representing 1.8% of total market capitalization.
Grove Hill Medical Center, New Britain, Conn., selected Putnam as bundled service provider for its $40 million money purchase 401(k) plan. Trustees expect to provide six to eight investment options; only the Templeton Foreign Fund will not be offered from Putnam. The fund has been employer-directed, using five external managers that a fund spokesman declined to name. PRIME Asset Consulting Group assisted.
J.S. Alberici Corp., St. Louis, hired Vanguard to provide bundled services for its $35 million profit-sharing/401(k) plan. Vanguard offers eight investment options plus daily valued record keeping, administration, trust services and employee education and communication. Alberici moved to the new plan July 1. Boatmen's Trust previously provided bundled services to the plan, said Herman Woodcock, the plan's administrator.
West End Lumber Co. Inc., Houston, hired Putnam as bundled provider for its $2.5 million 401(k) plan. Five Putnam funds will be offered as investment choices. The plan previously was employer-directed and the assets had been run by Hand & Associates. Post Oak Capital assisted in the search