Texas-Pension-Plans-Report-Strong-Returns

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NEWS FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Joe Gimenez 713.478.8034

Texas Public Employee Pensions Performing Well in 2010

Pension Association Says Results Show Strength of Texas System Based on Local Control

HOUSTON, September 2, 2010 ñPublic employee pensions around Texas are reporting strong annualized returns through the first half of 2010, according to TEXPERs, the statewide association for Texas public employee pensions.

ìOur members are reporting strong numbers for the last twelve months ended June 30,î said Max Patterson, the executive director for TEXPERS, an organization with more than 80 pension plans for firefighter, police, municipal and district employees, representing nearly 500,000 individuals.

Patterson noted the following examples of double digit returns for the last twelve months, ending on June 30, 2010:

Austin Firefighters Retirement Fund11.97 percent
City of Austin Employees Retirement System15.73 percent
Dallas Employee Retirement Fund18.74 percent
Fort Worth Employeesí Retirement Fund13.41 percent
Houston Municipal Employees Pension System12.2 percent
Houston Police Officers Pension System 13.67 percent

ìIn our view, we are seeing two core strengths of the Texas pension system play out to our membersí benefit,î Patterson said.

ìFirst, we are seeing the plans benefit from local control of investments at the member level, creating ëorganicí Texas diversification of assets. Thereís no crowd mentality of big-bet, eggs-in-one-basket investing going on among the plans.

ìSecond, we are seeing the continuing benefit of investments made during the dramatic downturns in 2008 and early 2009,î Patterson said. ìWhen times get tough, most mutual funds see net outflows as individual and 401(k) investors abandon their portfolio discipline and pull money from the market. Public pension funds are different, maintaining their investment streams and staying committed to the asset classes that were developed in their asset allocation studies, in this case their investments in international, emerging markets, high-yield and real estate investment trusts.

ìIn the long-term, the combination of diversification and portfolio discipline is a winning strategy for public employees and the cities that commit to their retirements,î Patterson said.

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About TEXPERs

The Texas Association of Public Employee Retirement Systems (TEXPERS) is a statewide voluntary nonprofit association to provide quality education to trustees, administrators, professional service providers and employee groups and associations engaged or interested in the management of public employee retirement systems. The Association provides the highest quality education and services to its participating retirement systems and affiliate members. By uniting Texas public pension systems, TEXPERS works for their common interests, monitors state and federal legislative activities and enhances professional fund management and administration. Over the past twenty years, TEXPERS system and associate membership has grown substantially. Today, TEXPERS' member systems represent approximately 300,000 active and retired participants and approximately $475 billion in assets. More information is available at www.TEXPERS.org or www.Texpers.blogspot.com.