Public pension funds in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut are reviewing their relationship with Goldman Sachs Asset Management following the SEC's charges against its parent, but none is taking any special action such as placing GSAM on a watchlist.
“The fund is constantly reviewing the performance of all of its investment managers and partners, including Goldman Sachs,” said Ola Fadahunsi, a spokesman for New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, the sole trustee of the $129.4 billion New York State Common Retirement Fund, Albany. “The fund will continue its diligent review of Goldman pending any further revelations, but we have not added them to any watch or review list at this time.”
Mr.Fadahunsi said the fund had about $670 million invested with GSAM in an international equity portfolio as of March 31 and has committed a combined $100 million to private equity funds GS Capital Partners III and GS Capital Partners 2000.
The New York state pension fund also owns about 2.2 million shares of Goldman Sachs common stock, worth about $352 million as of Tuesday's closing price. The stock has lost about 13% of its value since the SEC filed charges in federal court April 16, accusing Goldman Sachs and one of its vice presidents of fraud over a financial product tied to subprime mortgages. Goldman Sachs denied the charges.
In Connecticut, Attorney General Richard Blumenthal is launching his own investigation of Goldman Sachs, said Christine Shaw, director of governmental relations for the Connecticut Office of the State Treasurer.
“We will continue to keep a watchful eye on the developments surrounding the SEC's legal action against Goldman Sachs, and (we) are prepared to assist our attorney general as he launches his own preliminary investigation into the matters,” she said.
The state treasurer's office manages six state pension funds and eight state trust funds under the $22.9 billion Connecticut Retirement Plans and Trust Funds, Hartford.
The funds hold about $42.5 million in Goldman Sachs common stock and $18.5 million in Goldman Sachs bonds, both as of April 16.
Officials at the $98 billion New York City Retirement Systems are also watching for developments. “We're reviewing the events as they occur,” said Sharon Lee, a spokeswoman for the City Comptroller John Liu, investment adviser and custodian for the city's five pension funds. She would not say how much money the city's five pension funds have invested with GSAM.
Michael Loughran, another spokesman for Mr. Liu, said the pension funds collectively own 1.86 million shares of Goldman Sachs, valued at about $298.1 million at Tuesday's closing price.
In New Jersey, the “Division of Investment and the (state) attorney general are reviewing the state's interactions with Goldman and will take action if appropriate,” said Andrew Pratt, communications director for the state Department of Treasury. The division manages investments for seven public pension systems with a combined market value of $67.3 billion as of Feb. 26.
Mr. Pratt was unable to immediately provide details on the pension funds' investments in GSAM or holdings in Goldman Sachs