PROVIDENCE – Rhode Island’s pension fund earned more than $1.09 billion in 2017, ending the year with a value of $8.4 billion, R.I. Treasurer Seth Magaziner announced Wednesday.
“In 2017 we took our investment strategy Back to Basics and delivered strong returns that are helping the pension fund get stronger,” said Magaziner in a statement, referencing his initiative to divest from hedge funds that began in 2016. The fund has exited seven hedge funds for a total of $500 million since the initiative began.
The fund grew $725 million year over year from $7.7 billion at the end of calendar 2016, a 9.4 percent increase. The fund continually pays out benefits, therefore the fund’s earnings are not equivalent to its growth. For the year, the fund investments earned a return of 14.5 percent.
It is also worth noting that U.S. equities performed well in 2017. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index had a total return (including dividend reinvestment) of 21.1 percent. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 24.39 percent. And the Nasdaq Composite Index saw a 27.24 percent gain on the year.
Chris Bergenheim is the PBN web editor.