BOSTON — A number of big union pension funds have given Columbia Management Group the pink slip recently, citing the departures of key investment professionals and Taft-Hartley salesmen following the acquisition last April of Columbia parent FleetBoston Financial Corp. by Bank of America Corp.
By some estimates, those defections have lopped off more than $1 billion of Taft-Hartley assets from the $6 billion Columbia had managed as of mid-2004. Columbia spokesman Tom Gariepy called those estimates "too high," but declined to provide a figure.
Union funds that have pulled money from Boston-based Columbia over the past six months include:
• The $10.2 billion National Electrical Benefit Fund, Washington, which had assigned $160 million each in small-cap growth equities and high-yield bonds to Columbia;
• The $5.2 billion International Association of Machinists National Pension Fund, Washington, $150 million in high yield bonds;
• The $4 billion National Elevator Industry Benefit Plans, Newtown Square, Pa., $150 million in small-cap growth equities;
• The $1.9 billion Carpenters, District Council, Chicago, $30 million in small-cap growth;
• The $1.2 billion Food & Commercial Workers, Midwest Pension Fund, Chicago, $30 million in small-cap growth; and
• The $850 million Central Laborers Pension Fund, Jacksonville, Ill., $30 million in small-cap growth.