Sidebar: VRS’s Private Equity Balance Sheet

At the Nasdaq's peak in March 2000, the market value of Virginia Retirement System's private equity holdings had been $4.16 billion. Over the following year, the system saw draw-downs of $565 million, which means VRS increased its investments in these private equity funds by that amount for a total of about $4.725 billion. From March 2000 though March 31, 2001, VRS received about $1.629 billion in so-called "distributions," the monies that private equity fund managers return to their limited partners-such as VRS-either as dividends or as the payout when a portfolio company is purchased, merged, or goes public.

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