May 1994

A Single Standard

Private pension sponsors want a single standard for determining their present-value pension obligations. But first, they must convince four regulatory bodies that may not want to listen.

Profiling Public Funds

An exhaustive survey of the largest public pension funds shows rapidly growing assets and liabilities, slowly rising salaries, and shifting actuarial methods.

Termination Blues

An appeals court decision sends a warning to plan sponsors that want to cancel or amend their benefits packages.

Leaner and Meaner

How some pension sponsors are cutting the fat from their defined benefit plans to reduce costs and administartive headaches-and without simply shifting to defined contribution structures.

Cinderella Story

A disastrous 1992 performance prompted some participating local pension funds to pull out of PRIM. Now, with a stellar 1993 behind it, Massachusetts' unique long-term investment trust is getting back on track.

Silk Purse or Tin Cup?

To make sure none of their partners go begging after retirement, law firms are updating once highly informal pension arrangements.

Finding a Provider

With a heavy focus on a single complicated aspect of retirement policy, law firms find themselves building their own alliances.

Battling the Yield Curve

When the yield curve has been shooting the moon, what is a fixed-income manager to do? Few, it seems, are betting heavily on what will happen next.

The Currency Benchmark Debate

As customized currency benchmarks multiply and active tactical hedging takes off, the debate is heating up on how international investors should set their hedge ratios.

No Competitive Bid

The AARP runs an 850,000-participant fund program with just one manager, no competitive bidding process, and no third-party evaluation service.

Public Funds Health Care Debate

As a new national health care system is hammered out, public fund sponsors worry that their needs will not be addressed-though they may be left footing the bill.

Savings in the Sun

Puerto Rico residents love deferred compensation plans. But setting them up is not easy-for one thing, it means satisfying two overlapping tax regimes.

Derivatives on a Shoestring

GTE believes it can add 1% to its overall pension portfolio return through derivatives strategies run almost entirely in-house

A Line to the Floor

Direct access brokers give institutional investors quick access to the Big Board floor, plus a continuing picture of action on the exchange.

Going Paperless

Electronic pension benefits payment is better for both the plan sponsor and the retiree, proponents say. So why are they so slow to move into the paperless age?

Comparing Notes on Costs

In an effort to better manage costs, five of Canada's biggest public plans are sharing intimate data on their administrative expenses.

Cutting Out the Middle Bank

Euroclear and Cedel now offer limited direct access to corporate pensions and treasuries for tri-party repos. But thus far, few corporates appear eager to cut out the banks in the middle.

Opinion: Defining the ETI Debate

The current debate over economically targeted investments is mired in a bog of half-truths. Each side focuses on one part of the issue, and ignores or mischaracterizes the rest. But while "sound bite" analysis makes for exciting rhetoric, it does nothing to aid the search for better policy.