Illinois State University Retirement System Posts -1.4% Year-to-date Return

Of the 67 US public pension funds tracked by Pensions and investments Monday, the median return was -5.2% for the year ended June 30.

In a press release on Monday, the pension fund cited its defensive posture for above-median performance for the past fiscal year.

“The shift from growth-oriented assets to diversification strategies has served the portfolio well during this tumultuous financial year,” Doug Wesley, chief investment officer, said in the press release.

For the most recent year, the best performing asset class was Alternative Growth, which posted a net return of 26.2% for the year ended June 30, above its benchmark return of 11.4%. Non-traditional growth includes investments in non-core real assets and private equity.

Crisis risk netting, which includes alternative risk-premium strategies, long-dated US Treasuries and systematic trend-following strategies, was the second-best performer with a net 12.2% (at above its benchmark index of 8.4%). Stabilized Growth, which includes Core Real Assets, Public and Private Credit and Options Strategies, posted a net return of 0.1% (above its benchmark of -2.6%) . Inflation-Sensitive Assets, which consists of a strategy of US Treasury inflation-protected securities, delivered a net return of -5.1% (equal to its benchmark); principal protection, which consists of core fixed income securities, generated a net return of -6.8% (-7.6%); and traditional growth, which includes domestic, international and global public equities, posted a net return of -14.9% (-16.5%).

As of June 30, the actual pension fund allocation was 34.9% traditional growth, 19.4% crisis risk compensation, 17.2% stabilized growth, 15.8% non-traditional growth , 6.7% capital protection, 4.8% inflation-sensitive assets and 1.2% cash.

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