A bill now in the state Legislature of North Carolina could double the allocation to alternatives, to 40%, if it is approved. Janet Cowell, state Treasurer of North Carolina, supports the bill and is the sole trustee of the public pension.
North Carolina Retirement Systems, the $78.1 billion pension fund for the state, is seeking to shift allocations to alternatives to reach its 7.25% long-term assumed rate of return. Cowell said the pension needs to shift more assets from equities and fixed income. Noting predictions of a decade of poor returns, Cowell said at the Milken Institute Global Conference, “We can’t hedge out 10 years of slow growth.”
Cowell also said that she aims to cut the $18 million in fees the pension pays to fund of funds. She hopes to expand investment staff and move to more direct investments with alternatives.
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