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.
Markets were tumultuous in 2018, and the portfolio had an annual investment return of negative 3.9 percent. While this was disappointing, the Board's long-term investment approach continues to ensure that the portfolio is well positioned for long-term success.
The contrast between 2017 and 2018 market performance underscores the importance of the Board's commitment to planning and management of the portfolio for the long term. Markets were strong in 2017, and the portfolio had an annual investment return of 17 percent.
For information on the Board's perspective on investing and details on the portfolio returns and asset allocation as of December 31, 2018, read the 2018 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.