The purpose of the COAERS Trust Fund (the Fund) is to accumulate the financial reserves necessary to provide for the retirement or pensioning of eligible COAERS members and their beneficiaries. Overseeing the management of the Fund’s investments is the fiduciary duty of the COAERS Board of Trustees. The Board, COAERS Staff, and the Investment Consultant work together to formulate and implement an investment strategy that serves the long-term interests of the members by consistently achieving best-in-class results. The COAERS Investment Policy Statement and Investment Implementation Policy articulate the policies, guidelines and procedures employed in the day-to-day management of System assets. As of December 31, 2018, the assets of the Fund totaled $2.45 billion.
The COAERS Board of Trustees, in fulfilling its responsibility of ensuring that these assets are invested in a manner consistent with high fiduciary standards, has adopted the following investment beliefs to guide its asset allocation and investment implementation decisions.
- The Fund is a permanent entity with long-lived liabilities and, as such, it should strive to be a thoughtful, analytical, and patient investor.
- Clear governance and decision-making structures that promote decisiveness, simplicity, efficiency and accountability are effective and add value to the Fund.
- Strategic asset allocation is the most important choice in the investment process, with the level of risk assumed by the Fund driven primarily by its allocation to equity investments.
- Diversification across asset classes and risk factors is integral to the Fund’s design and, as a result, investments that may improve the risk/return profile of the Fund will be considered.
- The Fund should seek to be well compensated for the investment risks it chooses to bear, risks that should be articulated at the time of investment and revisited regularly.
- In the long run, equity investments are the most prudent investment vehicle for the growth and preservation of real values.
- Costs can significantly reduce net returns and therefore must be carefully measured and managed when making decisions regarding investment strategy and implementation.
- Implementation should occur passively and in public markets unless a high likelihood of success on a risk-adjusted, net-of-fees basis can be expected from other approaches.
- To the extent possible, investment decision-making should be driven by data and analysis, including the findings of relevant research on financial markets and investment management.
View the COAERS Investment Policy Statement here and the Investment Implementation Policy here.