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February 22, 2011


NYS Common Retirement Fund Releases Third Quarter Results

Solid Investment Returns Raise Pension Fund's Value to $140.6 Billion

The New York State Common Retirement Fund's (Fund) overall rate of return for the third quarter ending December 31, 2010 was 6.01 percent, according to figures released today by New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli. The Fund's estimated value at the end of the third quarter of its fiscal year stood at $140.63 billion, an estimated increase of $7.8 billion over its value at the end of the second quarter.

"The Fund benefitted from the rally in the equities market during the quarter," DiNapoli said. "And our diversified investment strategy and long-term perspective have the Fund well positioned to generate consistent, long-term returns. The lions' share of benefits— 84 percent—paid by the Fund comes from our investment earnings. I'm confident that the Fund's returns will continue to meet its obligations to our members in the future. We'll continue to meet our goal of minimizing the burden on taxpayers while protecting benefits for our members."

The New York Common Retirement Fund, recognized as one of the best-funded public pension systems in the nation by the Pew Center on the States, lowered its long-term assumed rate of return on investments from 8 percent to 7.5 percent last year following the recommendation of an actuarial review. The new assumed rate of return is more fiscally conservative than the national average for public pension funds and more conservative than the average for the top 100 private U.S. pension funds, according to Milliman's 10th annual Pension Funding Study.

In 2009, DiNapoli initiated quarterly performance reporting by the Fund, which had previously disclosed its results annually. This practice is part of DiNapoli's efforts to increase transparency and accountability regarding Fund management. The Fund will close its current fiscal year March 31, 2011, after which audited results will be reported.


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