NYTimes: Public Pension Funds Are Adding Risk to Raise Returns

No one can get 8% return in todays market without taking on additional risk. There is the mythical risk adjusted rate of return. On one end is the zero risk represented by a T bill. On the other is high risk high return of vc and hedge funds. If an instrument's return gets too high vis a vis the risk, then the price will rise and the return will drop.

Market conditions have reduced the advantage that some pension plans used to enjoy. Now everyone is fighting for the same return. No such thing as a free lunch. With enough invesments in highly risky deals some will go to zero. The successes need to pay for all those mistakes and still have a high enough return to keep investors interested.

From The New York Times:

Public Pension Funds Are Adding Risk to Raise Returns

Even as big companies are moving their pension funds out of stocks, state governments are chasing higher returns for their plans by making riskier investments.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/09/business/09pension.html

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Jean-Luc Park