Washington State Investment Board officials are considering increasing the fund's 17% private equity target, which it has reached, said Joe Dear, executive director of the $66.9 billion system. The target has a range of plus or minus four percentage points. The new target hasn't been determined yet. The Olympia-based fund achieved a 36% return on its private equity investments for the year ended March 31, Mr. Dear said.
"As the WSIB's private equity position approaches the 17% target it's natural to ask the question whether the target will be raised," Mr. Dear said. "As noted, there is a 4% band around the current target so there is no urgent or imminent action necessary since the allowable range could go up to 21%. We look at the strategic asset allocation at least every four years and at this point in time there is plenty of room to leave the target where it is."
Separately, investment staff is exploring commodity and infrastructure investments, Mr. Dear said. Recommendations have not been made to the board, but investment staff is "conducting active work" to see if commodities are appropriate and where the system would like to invest. He declined to provide further information.