Searches and Hires

Iowa PERS seeks high-yield fixed-income manager

Iowa Public Employees' Retirement System, Des Moines, is searching for a high-yield fixed-income manager for the $32.4 billion defined benefit system.

The size of the new portfolio has not yet been determined, said IPERS executive assistant Melinda McElroy in an email.

The search is being conducted to evaluate high-yield fixed-income strategies and managers in the market. Aegon Asset Management and Oaktree Capital Management (OAK) are IPERS' current high-yield managers and both can rebid.

The board will consider actively or passively managed strategies and may choose more than one manager. Managers must have at least $1.6 billion in assets in the strategy to be considered.

Investment consultant Wilshire Associates is assisting with the search.

Proposed strategies must invest at least 80% of its assets in publicly traded corporate debt securities rated below investment grade and be benchmarked against one of the FTSE, ICE Bank of America Merrill Lynch or Bloomberg Barclays high-yield bond market or issuer constrained indexes, according to the RFP.

The RFP is available on Wilshire's website. Proposals are due at 3 p.m. CST Nov. 6. A selection is expected to be made in late December or early January, said Ms. McElroy.

As of Dec. 31, IPERS' asset allocation targets were 27% core-plus fixed income and 3.5% public credit.