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

NYS Common Retirement Fund Reports First Quarter Results

Investment Performance Strong but DiNapoli Urges Caution

August 12, 2019

The New York State Common Retirement Fund’s (Fund) estimated return in the first quarter of the State Fiscal Year (SFY) 2019-20 was 3.38 percent for the three-month period ending June 30, 2019, raising its estimated value to $216.2 billion, according to New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli.

"The Fund is off to a strong start this fiscal year," DiNapoli said. "Markets have been volatile, however, warranting caution from investors. Longer term, we continue to take a conservative approach and closely examine our seven percent target rate of return to determine if it is due for an adjustment as a matter of prudent fiscal management. Our constant goal is to ensure that New York state’s pension fund remains one of the nation’s strongest and best funded, providing state and municipal employees with retirement security for generations to come."

The Fund's estimated value reflects benefits of $2.89 billion paid out during the quarter. Its audited value as of the March 31, 2019 close of last fiscal year was $210.5 billion.

As of June 30, 2019, the Fund had 38.6 percent of its assets invested in publicly traded domestic equities and 15.3 percent in international public equities. The remaining Fund assets by allocation are invested in cash, bonds and mortgages (24.8 percent), private equity (9.2 percent), real estate and real assets (8.5 percent) and absolute return strategies and opportunistic alternatives (3.6 percent).

In June, the Pew Charitable Trusts once again ranked the Fund one of the best funded in the nation. Only eight states had a funded ratio of 90 percent or higher based on 2017 data, with New York ranked fourth behind Wisconsin, South Dakota and Tennessee.

DiNapoli initiated quarterly investment performance reporting in 2009 as part of his ongoing efforts to increase accountability and transparency. Quarterly rates of return provide a snapshot of performance over three months and reflect a fraction of the Fund’s annual investment return.

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.

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