Florida State Board of Administration, Tallahassee, issued an RFP for at least one firm to provide global custody, securities lending and performance measurement services for the $102.4 billion Florida Retirement System and nearly $2 billion in other funds. Incumbent State Street Bank's contract is expiring; the firm can rebid, said Michael P. McCauley, director of investment services and communications. The proposal is available on the board's website, www.sbafla.com. Notices of intent to bid are due Sept. 24, and proposals are due Sept. 30. A decision is expected in January. R.V. Kuhns & Associates is assisting.
San Antonio Fire & Police Pension Fund plans to search within the next month for at least one hedge fund-of-funds manager to run a total of $75 million, said Warren Schott, executive director. Officials at the $1.5 billion system have not determined how many managers would be hired. Funding will come from terminating the system's internally managed S&P 500 I-Shares portfolio. No decision has been made on whether a consultant will assist.
Kentucky Deferred Compensation System, Frankfort, will issue separate RFPs in late October for record-keeping, investment consulting and marketing/communications services for its 401(k) and 457 plans, with a combined $1 billion in assets, said Robert Brown, executive director. The contract with Nationwide Retirement Solutions, which handled those duties for the two plans, expires June 30, 2005; Nationwide can rebid. The system will probably finalize new contracts by February, Mr. Brown said. Details of the RFPs have not been finalized. The plans, which mirror each other, offer 32 investment options each.
New Orleans City Employees' Retirement System on Sept. 8 will consider a return to international equity, said Jerry Davis, board chairman. The asset class was dropped by the $365 million plan years ago, but Mr. Davis said he believes it may be time to get back in. "It's been a frantic year as we try to see where we are investment-wise," said Mr. Davis. "Asset allocation is an ongoing review." The retirement system has a 7.5% target rate of return, Mr. Davis said, and the plan is at roughly 4% year-to-date. The plan's asset allocation is 60% domestic equity; 30% domestic fixed income; and 10% alternatives. Morgan Stanley is assisting.
Kansas Public Employees Retirement System, Topeka, is undertaking an asset-liability study of the $10.3 billion pension fund, said Glenn Deck, executive director. Consultant Ennis Knupp is assisting. The fund's board will consider the study results on Sept. 16. The plan's asset allocation is: 33.8% domestic equity; 21.9% fixed income; 21.3% international equity; 9.4% Treasury Inflation-Protected Security; 7.1% real estate; 5.1% alternatives; 1.4% cash.
Maryland State Retirement & Pension System, Baltimore, will consider increasing its hedge fund investments as part of an asset allocation study now under way, said Steve Huber, chief investment officer. "If we do invest in more hedge funds, we will do something that's low risk," Mr. Huber said, although he noted officials at the $30.1 billion system are concerned that too much money is chasing too few hedge funds right now. "Hedge funds are a demand-driven market, and typically, demand-driven markets do not produce good returns." The study should be wrapped up by the end of the year, he added.