Los Angeles Water & Power Employees' Retirement Plan and retiree health benefits fund hired BlackRock to manage about $450 million in passive short-duration U.S. Treasury inflation-protected securities, said Jeremy Wolfson, chief investment officer, in an email.
BlackRock was hired for the new mandate following an RFP launched in July. In March, the board had reorganized its roughly $644 million real assets portfolio, replacing its 64% suballocation to global inflation-linked securities with 70% in passively managed U.S. TIPS, increased commodities to 30% from 24%, and reduced timber to zero from 12% of the real assets portfolio.
Separately, the board at its Jan. 22 meeting had removed Neuberger Berman from its watchlist. Neuberger Berman manages a total of $853.3 million in extended global credit fixed income for the pension fund and retiree health benefits fund. In January 2019, Neuberger Berman was placed on organizational watch status due to the retirement, at the end of 2018, of Andrew Johnson, former managing director and global head of investment-grade fixed income. He was replaced by managing directors Dave Brown and Thanos Bardas, co-heads of investment-grade fixed income. The board removed the firm from watch because the portfolio has continued to outperform its benchmark and the team has maintained a consistent level of operational controls, according to a staff memo to the board.