The California Public Employees’ Retirement System managed to make money last year—no thanks to its hedge fund investments.
The nation’s largest public pension fund lost 2.29% on hedge funds, Joseph Dear, chief investment officer, told the CalPERS board. Despite the loss, CalPERS managed a 1.1% return for 2011, a year that saw the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index finish flat.
What positive return there was can be attributed to CalPERS’ other alternative investments. Its private equity portfolio was up 12.37% through the third quarter, and its real-estate portfolio returned 9.92%.