New York State Common Retirement Fund, Albany, terminated BlackRock from a $1.6 billion Russell 1000 Alpha Tilts large-cap equity account, according to Thomas P. DiNapoli, state comptroller and sole trustee of the $132.8 billion fund.
“The BlackRock Russell termination is part an adjustment the fund is undertaking following last year's asset allocation study,” Olayinka Fadahunsi, a spokesman for Mr. DiNapoli, said in an e-mailed response to questions. “We’re reducing our exposure to some asset classes, including public equities. There’s been no firm determination on where we will commit those funds.”
BlackRock had managed the Alpha Tilts portfolio since November 2001, Mr. Fadahunsi said, adding that “the performance has been below the benchmark since inception.” Alpha Tilts is an enhanced index fund benchmarked to the Russell 1000, he said.
He said the assets were moved to the fund’s cash portfolio. Making allocation changes based on the study “is expected to take two or three years, so closing the (BlackRock) account is a part of that adjustment period.”
Brian Beades, a BlackRock spokesman, said: "As a matter of company policy, we do not comment on client activity."
Separately, the pension fund committed $12.5 million to Grey Mountain Partners through the fund’s Pioneer Partnership Fund A, according to a news release from Mr. DiNapoli’s office.