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CalPERS adopts Global Investment Performance Standards

The California Public Employees' Retirement System, Sacramento, is adopting Global Investment Performance Standards from the CFA Institute, making it among the first asset owners to adopt the voluntary principles based on transparency and fair representation of investment performance.

CalPERS is adopting the standards for reporting the performance of the $349.3 billion pension fund, confirmed Michael Krimm, CalPERS' investment director, investment risk and performance, in an interview.

Over time, CalPERS officials expect other institutional investors will adopt the standards, which would increase the comparability of performance among asset owners, said Robert Paterson, CalPERS' investment manager, performance analytics, in the same interview.

CalPERS has already heard from other investors interested in GIPS, he said.

"We want to be a leader in the space," Mr. Paterson said.

CFA Institute executives think other asset owners will take a cue from CalPERS.

"CalPERS is a bellwether for the industry," for money managers and investors, said Paul Smith, CEO and president of the CFA Institute.

When CalPERS acts "people sit up and take notice," Mr. Smith said.

CalPERS is adopting the standards at a time when the CFA Institute is working to revise the performance standards, expected to be completed by 2020, which would include alternative investment and mutual fund managers in addition to traditional money managers, Mr. Smith said.