Florida State Board of Administration, Tallahassee, renewed its commitment to find a manager to run a terror-free international equity fund as an investment choice for its $4.8 billion 401(a) plan.
The board, which oversees a total of $137.9 billion in assets, had failed to meet a March 1 deadline imposed by the Florida Legislature to begin offering such an option to participants.
Consultant Wilshire Associates and board staff are directly contacting investment advisory firms they've identified as candidates to offer such a fund, either passively or actively managed, said Dennis D. MacKee, FSBA communications director.
Wilshire and staff were unable by the deadline to find a fund that doesn't have investments in companies with links to Iran and Sudan, as required by a state law enacted last year, Mr. MacKee said.
“To date, no product exists that meets our fiduciary requirements that would provide suitable fees and returns for (Florida Retirement System) Investment Plan members,” Ashbel C. Williams, FSBA executive director and chief investment officer, wrote in a letter March 10 to state Sen. Ted Deutch, co-sponsor of the terror-free investment legislation. “We will continue our search in good faith and promptly let you know if we are successful in our efforts.” — Barry B. Burr