CalSTRS News Archive

CalSTRS news archive


Past news articles, reports and other published materials on CalSTRS programs and investments.

Article CIO Magazine, Corporate MovesApril 13, 2020

CalSTRS COIO Debra Smith to retire in May

Debra Smith, the chief operating investment officer at the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS), will retire next month. The pension fund will start recruiting for her replacement in the next six weeks.

Smith, who worked at the fund for 24 years, reported directly to CIO Chris Ailman and was responsible for the fund’s enterprise strategic and business plan goals, according to a Monday release. She announced her retirement to the educator pension system in February. Her last day in the position will be May 7. 

Article Impact Alpha, NewsApril 16, 2020

Four ways for universal owners to live up to their name in the COVID recovery

Stewards of capital must become the stewards of a new form of capitalism.  

The simulations and scenarios of central bankers and government regulators, the World Bank and the IMF and stock exchanges and trading networks surely included pandemics. But for all of the handwringing about Too Big to Fail, they apparently forgot to put the economic system through a global health stress test. 

A system failure of this magnitude reflects, um, a system failure.

Article CNBC, Squawk BoxApril 15, 2020

How second largest US public pension fund is investing amid coronavirus

The nation’s second largest public pension fund has been using a strategy to mitigate the impact of the coronavirus-fueled selloff and is now focused on the recent rally off the lows. The California State Teachers’ Retirement System has more than $226 billion in assets is under management with a long-term focus. Christopher Ailman, chief investment officer at CalSTRS, joins “Squawk Box” by phone to discuss.

Article CIO Magazine, by Teresa Barger and Aeisha MastagniApril 6, 2020

Why shareholder meetings should go virtual in 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused fear and confusion for all investors, and market volatility reflects this uncertainty. Just as the response to COVID-19 needs science, the markets need data and transparency. Rather than ramping up disclosures, too many companies around the globe have begun to postpone or cancel their Annual General Shareholder Meetings (AGMs) altogether. As of March 26, International Shareholder Services (ISS) reported 400 adjourned or canceled AGMs globally. This is a mistake.

Article Deal Street Asia, NewsMarch 10, 2020

US pension fund CalSTRS allocates $2.2b to PE managers in H2

US pension fund California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) committed a total of $2.2 billion to private equity managers in the second half of last year ended 30 September, bringing its total for 2019 to $7.6 billion.

According to its latest private equity investment report, the second half commitment included the $1.6 billion approved during the fourth quarter, increasing its exposure to PE to 9.5 per cent from 9.3 per cent in March last year.

The pension fund’s overall PE program is slightly above the current target of 9 per cent but still below the long-term target exposure of 13 per cent.

Article CIO Magazine, CoronavirusMarch 23, 2020

CalSTRS CEO Jack Ehnes postpones retirement because of coronavirus

Jack Ehnes, longtime chief executive officer at the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS), is postponing his retirement to steer the $246 billion pension plan through the coronavirus pandemic, the fund said Friday. 

The leader of the largest educator-only fund in the world will continue at the helm through June 2021. His decision came after the CalSTRS board requested he postpone his retirement as trustees continue their search for a new chief executive while scrambling to respond to the economic impact of COVID-19. 

Article I&PE, NewsMarch 6, 2020

CalSTRS invests heavily in real estate debt, offices and secondaries

California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) has been seeking to increase its exposure to real estate debt, offices and property funds via the secondary market.

As part of more than $2bn (€1.74bn) committed to real estate strategies in the second half of 2019, the $252bn pension fund allocated $648m to real estate debt investments.

Article CIO Review, Commentary by Ashish JainFebruary 10, 2020

How we sharpened our agility with cloud and IT

An essential function of any organization is to periodically evaluate tits IT infrastructure in relation to its business needs, drivers and priorities. CalSTRS has three high-priority business drivers: mitigating operational risks, transforming stakeholder experience and controlling costs. CalSTRS is addressing its highest priorities by implementing a hybrid cloud IT infrastructure model that will provide cost-effective security, agility, usability and flexibility as a critical foundation for fulfilling its enterprise strategies.

Article CNBC, Trading NationFebruary 24, 2020

Coronavirus fears slam stocks—what investors should watch now

Coronavirus chaos reigns.

Stocks fell sharply Monday as the number of coronavirus cases outside of China surged, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average shedding more than 1,000 points intraday and erasing its year-to-date gain.

But as investors fretted over the outbreak’s potential impact on the global economy, market commentators largely agreed that this drop, however vicious, was warranted after months of a seemingly unstoppable rally.

Article CIO Magazine, Asset AllocationJanuary 10, 2020

CalSTRS rejects fossil fuel divestment

The California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) has formally rejected calls from environmentalists for divestment of its fossil fuel portfolio.

CalSTRS, in a required environmental report to the California state legislature, said that divesting of the fossil fuel stocks could have a detrimental effect on the teachers’ pension fund.

Article S&P Global Market Intelligence, InterviewJanuary 8, 2020

CalSTRS CIO sounds alarm bells on climate risk; ‘Investors need to wake up’

Christopher Ailman is the outspoken chief investment officer of the California State Teachers’ Retirement System, the second- largest U.S. pension fund with a $248 billion investment portfolio. CalSTRS is one of the major participants in Climate Action100+, an investor initiative pressing large corporate greenhouse gas emitters to take action on climate change.

Ailman spoke to S&P Global Market Intelligence about CalSTRS’ focus in 2020. The following interview has been edited for length and clarity.