University of Missouri System, Columbia, will search for an investment consultant in 2017 for the system’s $3.1 billion defined benefit plan and $1.3 billion endowment pool, said Thomas F. Richards, treasurer and chief investment officer, in an e-mail.
The RFP will be issued due to current investment consultant Verus Advisory’s contract ending Oct. 6, 2017, pending board approval. Mr. Richards said the five-year contract with Strategic Investment Solutions — which merged with Verus in January — was originally set to expire this year. However, the board had already approved a custodian RFP for this year.
“Because we had already prioritized the decision to put our investment custodian services out for bid this year, we got board consent to extend Verus into a sixth year before doing an RFP,” Mr. Richards said. “We simply didn’t want the internal disruption of potentially changing both our investment custodian and investment consultant in the same year.”
The timeline for the RFP has yet to be determined. Verus will be invited to rebid.
Separately, the endowment pool returned a net -0.2%, 40 basis points below its benchmark, in the fiscal year ended June 30.
The best-performing asset class was real estate, which returned a net 10.8% in the fiscal year ended June 30. Emerging markets debt had the next-highest return at 7.6%, followed by private equity at 7.2%.
The rest of the returns were inflation-linked bonds, 2.3%; opportunistic debt, 0.2%; risk parity, -0.2%; global fixed income, -0.8%; hedge funds, -3.3%; and global equity, -3.5%.
As of June 30, the endowment pool’s actual allocation was 43.5% global equity, 10.6% risk parity, 9.5% private equity, 8% real estate/infrastructure, 6.5% hedge funds, 5.5% opportunistic debt, 4.7% emerging markets debt, 4.5% global fixed income, 3% inflation-linked bonds, 2.2% cash and the rest in commodities.
The endowment pool’s target allocation is 43.5% global equity, 10% each real estate/infrastructure and risk parity, 9.5% private equity, 7% opportunistic debt, 6% hedge funds, 5% emerging markets debt, 4% global fixed income, 3%inflation-linked bonds and 2% commodities.
As of June 30, the DB plan’s actual allocation was 37.6% global equity, 11.4% opportunistic debt, 9.6% risk parity, 8.6% private equity, 6.9% real estate/infrastructure, 5.8% emerging markets debt, 5.6% global fixed income, 5.4% hedge funds, 3.9% inflation-linked bonds, 3.2% commodities and the rest in cash.
The DB plan’s target allocation is 38% global equity, 12% opportunistic debt, 10% risk parity, 9% private equity, 8% real estate/infrastructure, 6% each emerging markets debt and hedge funds, 4% each global fixed income and inflation-linked bonds, and 3% commodities.