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NEWS from the Office of the New York State Comptroller
Contact: Press Office 518-474-4015


DiNapoli: State Pension Fund Value $210.2 Billion

Earns 5.23 Percent Return in State Fiscal Year 2019

May 16, 2019

New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli today announced the New York State Common Retirement Fund (Fund) earned an estimated 5.23 percent return on investments in the state fiscal year (SFY) that ended on March 31, 2019. The Fund closed the year with an estimated value of $210.2 billion, which is subject to change once returns are fully audited. The Fund’s audited value at the end of state fiscal year 2018 was $207.4 billion.

“The Fund’s value continued to grow during its 2019 fiscal year and remains well positioned to meet its long term return expectations and provide retirement security for our members, retirees and their beneficiaries,” DiNapoli said. “It was a tumultuous year in the markets that fortunately came with more ups than downs, including a swift recovery from December’s significant correction.”

During SFY 2019, the Fund’s public equities, including domestic and non-U.S. holdings, had overall returns of 4.86 percent. The Fund’s broader approach to fixed income markets over the last year returned 4.42 percent. The Fund’s diversification strategy performed well, with private equity and real estate delivering returns of 9.90 percent and 7.09 percent, respectively.

The Fund is ranked one of the nation’s best-funded pension plans, according to Pew Charitable Trusts. The New York State and Local Retirement System (NYSLRS) provides retirement security to more than one million active state and local government employees, retirees and their beneficiaries. NYSLRS pays out more than $1 billion in benefits payments a month. Employer contribution rates are determined by investment results over a multi-year period along with numerous other actuarial assumptions, including wage growth, inflation, age of retirement and mortality. The Fund’s long-term expected rate of return is 7 percent.

The Fund’s value and rate of return in prior years is available online:

Returns for the Fund’s Asset Classes (as of March 31, 2019)
  Percent Returned Percentage of Fund’s
Total Investments
Domestic Equities 8.84% 35.8%
Core Fixed Income 4.84% 17.3%
Non-US Equities -4.46% 12.9%
Private Equity 9.90% 9.1%
Real Estate 7.09% 7.3%
Global Equities 3.03% 5.3%
TIPS* 2.76% 4.0%
Absolute Return Strategies 2.07% 2.5%
Non-Core Fixed Income 3.92% 2.0%
Cash 2.59% 1.5%
Opportunistic Alternatives 7.29% 1.3%
Real Assets 8.15% 1.0%

* Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities

About the New York State Common Retirement Fund

The New York State Common Retirement Fund is the third largest public pension fund in the United States. The Fund holds and invests the assets of the New York State and Local Retirement System on behalf of more than one million state and local government employees and retirees and their beneficiaries. The Fund has consistently been ranked as one of the best managed and best funded plans in the nation. The Fund's fiscal year ends March 31.