Safe investments, cutting fees help pension system weather downturn

Dec 09, 2022

State Treasurer Dale Folwell reported this week that while stocks have taken a major hit this year, the state’s pension system remains on solid footing and has performed above better than expected.

The country’s stock markets have been in sharp decline this year thanks to several factors, including record inflation and a global supply chain crisis, as well as lingering effects of the COVID pandemic. The Dow Jones is down around 20% for the year, and the Nasdaq is down more than 33%.

But Folwell told reporters Tuesday that North Carolina’s plan is down just 7%, while other states like Georgia are down more than twice that amount.

He pointed to shrewd investments in cash equivalents and short-term bonds – which his critics disagreed with – as well as his efforts to cut $700 million in fees paid to Wall Street money managers since taking office as causes for the performance.

More than 1 million people – around 10% of the state’s population – are now part of the $111 billion plan.