Each year, the Board of Pensions releases the Investment Review, which discusses the investment results of the Balanced Investment Portfolio for the previous year. This portfolio contains the assets for the Pension Plan and the Death and Disability Plan.
What was an interesting and challenging decade for global investors closed out strong, and the Balanced Investment Portfolio had an annual investment return of 17.8 percent in 2019. The portfolio began 2019 with assets totaling $9.6 billion. At year-end, the market value of the portfolio totaled $10.2 billion.
The annual investment return in 2018, a year of tumultuous markets, was negative 3.9 percent, following a 2017 return of 17 percent. The contrast among 2017, 2018, and 2019 performance underscores the importance of the Board of Pensions’ commitment to planning and management of the portfolio for the long term. This approach increases the likelihood of long-term success.
For information on the Board’s perspective on investing, details on the portfolio returns, and asset allocation as of December 31, 2019, read the 2019 Investment Review.
The investment objective of the portfolio is to maximize the total return on investments while maintaining prudent levels of risk throughout diverse economic and market conditions. The long-term goal is to achieve a total return on assets that enables the Board to maintain and increase pension and death and disability benefits.
The Board retains investment managers for each asset class in the portfolio, which is broadly diversified. The asset classes include U.S. and international stocks, bonds, and partnerships investing in private equity, natural resources, and other investments.
While adhering to its fiduciary duty to its members, the Board currently follows all General Assembly guidelines concerning socially screened investments. In 2017, the Board significantly expanded its commitment to environmentally responsible investing through a fossil fuel-free portfolio, and in 2019, became a proud investor signatory of Climate Action 100+. The Board is among more than 320 investor signatories from dozens of countries that manage assets totaling more than $33 trillion.