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In Memoriam: Kendall S. Thomas, Sr.

Kendall S. Thomas, Sr., a prominent public employee retirement sector figure, died on Oct. 11, 2023. He was a longtime member of the Texas Association of Public Employee Retirement Systems, including serving as a former board member. 

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National Retirement Security Month: Ensuring a Bright Future for Public Employees in Texas

The Federal Reserve Report on Economic Well-Being of U.S. Households in 2022 indicates Americans' progress toward retirement savings goals declined. October is National Retirement Security Month, which encourages individuals to consider their retirement goals and take action to secure them. A Texas public employee pension system is ideal for guiding its annuitants through the process. 

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Texas Pension Review Board to Review and Revise Key Administrative Rules

The Texas Pension Review Board is reviewing several of the state agency's key rules and seeking public input.

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Celebrating German-American Day: The Contributions of German-Americans in Public Service

On Oct. 6, Americans across the country celebrate German-American Day, a day dedicated to honoring the rich cultural heritage and contributions of German-Americans to the United States. While many may associate German-Americans with their delicious cuisine, beautiful music, and strong work ethic, it's essential to recognize their significant role in public service. German-Americans have a long history of serving as public employees, contributing to the U.S. economy, and strengthening our communities. In this blog post, we will explore the importance of this contribution and why it is crucial to protect the pensions of those who serve as public employees.

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Governor Abbott Announces Special Session No. 3

With a commitment to furthering the progress he says was achieved during the 88th Regular Legislative Session and two preceding special sessions this summer, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Oct. 5 unveiled his agenda for the third legislative special session of the year. The special session starts at 1 p.m. Monday, Oct. 9.

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A Comprehensive Look Into the Economic Well-Being and Retirement Preparedness of U.S. Workers

In an era defined by evolving workplace dynamics and a heightened focus on employee well-being, the 2023 Workplace Wellness Survey offers a comprehensive look into the well-being and retirement preparedness of employees in the United States. Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) conducted this survey on financial well-being, employment-based health insurance, and retirement benefits in the workplace.

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Join Us for TEXPERS' Annual Conference in Dallas, Texas

Are you ready for an unforgettable experience that combines professional development, networking opportunities, and the chance to celebrate three decades of excellence in pensions? Look no further than the Texas Association of Public Employee Retirement Systems (TEXPERS) 35th Anniversary Conference, set to take place from April 7 to 10, 2024, at the Hyatt Regency Dallas in Dallas, Texas.

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Government Shutdown: Why it Matters to Texas Public Employee Pension System Administrators

Good news. Congress is avoiding a government shutdown, at least through Nov. 17. As news of a government shutdown captures headlines nationwide, it might seem like a distant issue for those entrusted with managing Texas public employee pension systems. After all, the daily operations of pension systems are largely independent of federal politics, right? Well, not quite. In this blog post, we'll explore why any potential government shutdown should concern trustees and administrators of public employee pension systems and why staying informed is crucial for safeguarding the financial futures of countless retirees.

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Catch Up on the Latest Advancements and Trends in the Field of Pensions

Research papers and studies serve as a gateway to the latest advancements and trends in the field of public employee retirement systems. They provide access to cutting-edge knowledge, allowing trustees and administrators to stay ahead of the curve. By staying informed about the latest research, pension fund leaders can make informed decisions that can significantly impact the retirement systems they oversee. Through networking with its partner organizations plus the Association's investment, consultants, actuaries, vendors, and other service providers members and communicating with retirement and investment industry research groups, TEXPERS shares reports, research papers, briefs, and other documents with its members. 

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Government Watch

Congress raised the debt limit this year to prevent a government default. They are working to agree on next year's budget by Sept. 30.

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The Significance of Parents' Day

Parents' Day, observed this year on Sunday, July 23, is a special occasion that allows us to express gratitude and appreciation for our parents' love, sacrifices, and guidance. While we often celebrate this day by showering them with gifts and affection, it is also an opportune time to reflect upon the significance of a secure retirement for our elderly parents. In this blog post, we will explore why Parents' Day serves as a timely reminder to prioritize and ensure our aging parents' financial well-being.

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Pension Review Board Reports on System News

On June 29, the Texas Pension Board received updates on the recent progress and changes pension funds have made. The City of Midland and pension officials presented their case at the beginning of the meeting, and PRB staff actuary David Fee followed on with additional reports:

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Celebrating World Population Day on Tuesday, July 11, 2023

July 11 is World Population Day, a time to celebrate the growth of our global society and recognize how population changes impact our lives. The U.S. Census Bureau population projections indicate the world population will surpass 8 billion by the end of this year.

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Maximize Your Success

As members of the pensions and investments industry, we know that professional development is essential for staying current on trends and regulations. TEXPERS is proud to host its Summer Educational Forum in The Woodlands, Texas – an annual event designed to provide public employee retirement system administrators, board members, and other key stakeholders with the necessary tools and resources to maximize their professional growth. In this blog post, we'll discuss how you can make the most out of your experience at the conference and prepare for success!

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A Pension Act in 1776 Paved the Way to Ensure Financial Security for Government Workers Today

In 1776, the founding fathers of the United States declared independence from Great Britain and made a bold statement: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights.” This declaration was a major milestone in the history of our nation and has been seen as a major contributor to our current retirement system. Public employee pension system leaders can thank the founding of the Continental Congress and the Declaration of Independence for the right to receive defined benefits and secure retirement plans - enabling local government workers to retire with peace of mind. In this blog post, we will explore how this important document has helped shape today’s public employee retirement benefits.

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Report Warns of More Economic Shocks

A recently released report from Ortec Finance has some interesting findings about the U.S. public pension plan sector. According to the Ortec Finance report, 90% of public sector pension plan managers expect to increase spending on scenario modeling and stress testing in the next two years to manage market shocks. For TEXPERS System Members, scenario modeling and stress testing are familiar tools they use to better understand how market volatility may affect their pensions. We'll look at the report's key findings and provide context. 

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Next-gen Security Providers Offer Products That Protect Multiple Parts of the IT Supply Chain and Use AI to Find Network Anomalies or Threats

Over the past decade, as businesses have undertaken digital transformation initiatives to improve efficiencies and outcomes, cyberattacks have continued to increase in both frequency and complexity. These cyberattacks are increasingly committed by well-funded criminal and state-sanctioned groups seeking to exploit vulnerabilities and disrupt operations for financial gain or to steal intellectual property and other sensitive data for competitive gains or national intelligence purposes. Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, businesses of all sizes have responded to new, unexpected customer and employee needs by accelerating their investments in digital technologies. These investments have not only driven positive business outcomes but have also created new areas of vulnerability for companies across their entire technology supply chain and infrastructure. The increase in the number of endpoints resulting from the exponential growth of mobile computing and Internet of Things (IoT) devices, as well as the larger technology infrastructure surface areas supporting cloud-computing needs, has provided cyber attackers with more areas to potentially exploit and gain unauthorized access. These cyberattacks contribute to a wide variety of adverse outcomes—lost revenue from network downtime, increased costs from ransom payments, fines and/or mitigation spending, lost data integrity, impact to the business from increased reputational risk and, in certain cases, national security risks. As businesses continue to invest in digital transformation to accelerate growth initiatives, the increased threat from cyber criminals will also require larger and more targeted investments in next-generation cybersecurity defense technology to protect digital assets and networks while minimizing the operational and financial costs of a cyberattack.

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Approaching Investing in The Republic of China

China’s economy and markets are not only too large to ignore, but they are now so large that there is a small but growing group of investors who approach China as a specific investment allocation.

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As Globalization Slows and Labor Markets Tighten, Inflation Will Rise

As we settle into the first quarter of 2023, it’s worth discussing the current cycle and the implications for markets in 2023—but the bigger issue is the developing likelihood we have begun to shift into a different economic and market environment, marking a different era than we have seen in the decade-plus since the Global Financial Crisis (GFC). 

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Listed REITs Have Likely Priced in a Recession; Analysis Points to a Recovery Next

Investors have priced in a negative, forward-looking view of listed real estate. Slowing growth and higher inflation have created a stagflationary backdrop that has been especially challenging for REITs. The result is that there has been a dramatic performance difference between listed and private real estate in 2022. While REITs, as measured by the FTSE Nareit All Equity REITs Index, are down -27.9% through September and down -21% through November, the NCREIF ODCE index, a measure of private real estate that is calculated quarterly, is up 13% through September on a total return basis. Based on history, we believe that gap in performance will not persist. Indeed, private real estate returns are just beginning to slow as expected. Private real estate typically lags listed real estate due to its slower-moving price discovery and transactions.

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