NC to Use Analytics Software to Manage Risk

October 31, 2011 ( – North Carolina’s Department of State Treasurer announced the state will implement customized analytics software to better protect the pensions of state and local government employees, reports Government Technology. 

According to the article, the customized software from SAS — which the company says will be made available to all state pension systems — will be able to more efficiently track risks with current and new investments for North Carolina’s $70.5 billion pension portfolio. The company said its software also will be able to provide more accurate expectations on ROI and volatility. 

North Carolina State Treasurer Janet Cowell said the 2008 stock market crash created concern about the state pension and demonstrated a need to track it with analytics software. “North Carolina’s pension fund normally is very well funded — about 95% funded for the state plan and 99% for the local plans. So we are a very well funded system,” Cowell said, according to the news report. “It performs well, but everybody had a lot of lessons to learn by the volatility not only in ’08, but since then. And I think there’s been a heightened interest in risk management generally.”

According to SAS, the customized software suite North Carolina will be using includes risk and performance measurement models for fixed-income equity, private markets, and hedge funds. It will generate reports and provide dashboards for pension fund portfolio management. In addition, the system includes “data management and workflow processes specific to pension fund assets, and integrates third-party benchmark and market data related to the pension.” All portfolio and market data will be hosted in the company’s analytics lab.