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Showing posts from 2013

November Board News

(The text below is reprinted from the news release by STRS on 11/22/2013.)

Investment Staff Outlines Final Changes to Target Allocations
During the November meeting of the State Teachers Retirement Board, Investment Department staff presented a review of the Statement of Investment Objectives and Policy and the Statement of Fund Governance. Included in this review was a proposed change to the STRS Ohio Total Fund target allocation. The changes proposed were the final phase of revisions called for during the 2012 asset-liability study. The target allocation weights are shown in the table below: Asset Class Target Allocation    Liquidity Reserve 1%    Fixed Income 18%    Domestic Equities 31%    International Equities 26%    Real Estate 10%    Alternative

October Board News

The text below is reprinted from the news release by STRS on 10/18/2013. You'll note the pension funding ratio improved to 66% but is still well below where it needs to be even after strong recent market returns and pension changes. Teachers don't be surprised if additional future changes in the form of benefit reductions of some form are required. 

--- Annual Actuarial Valuation Shows Improvement in STRS Ohio Funding; Consultant Provides Guidance on Funding Policy
At its October meeting, the State Teachers Retirement Board received a report of the annual pension valuation results from its actuarial consultant, Segal Consulting. The report provides a “snapshot” of the actuarial position of the retirement fund as of July 1, 2013. This is the first valuation completed using the new benefit structure resulting from the passage of pension reform legislation last fall. Segal’s report this year shows the funding period for the pension fund decreased to 36.1 years, an…

September Board News

(The text below is reprinted from the news release by STRS on 09/20/2013.)

STRS Ohio Finance Staff Details New Pension Reporting Rules At the September meeting of the State Teachers Retirement Board, STRS Ohio’s Finance Department reviewed with the board how new Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) rules will impact the way pension funds report unfunded pension liabilities in published financial statements beginning later this fiscal year. One of the more significant changes affects the discount rate used by pension funds with projected cash flows that are not sufficient to pay all projected future benefits. STRS Ohio currently uses a 7.75% discount rate (the assumed rate of return on investments). Many public pension plan administrators across the United States use discount rates in the 7.5%–8% range because that has been the typical historic average return for long-term investors with asset allocations primarily invested in stocks. If plan assets are not sufficient to cove…

STRS Ohio Launches Updated/Responsive Website

(FROM the STRS Ohio eUPDATE)

STRS Ohio launched its new responsive website today to improve members' access to information about their pension fund on multiple devices.

While the site's web address remainswww.strsoh.org, the site will now "detect" how members are connecting to it and display content appropriately on their smart phone, tablet or desktop computer.

The updated site also has been restructured to guide members to information related to the two key phases of teaching: "During Your Career" and "Receiving Benefits." Members can still access the "Personal Account Information" area by entering their username and password in the fields in the upper right-hand corner on the home page or by clicking "Login" in the same spot on any other page.

Additional site enhancements include:
•Interactive maps that show meeting and seminar locations that when clicked, link to a larger map that allow members to get driving directions.•A multi…

August Board News

(The text below is reprinted from the news release by STRS on 08/16/2013.)

STRS Ohio Posts +13.7% Total Fund Return in Fiscal Year 2013 At the August meeting of the State Teachers Retirement Board, Investment Department staff reported that the total fund return for the year ending June 30, 2013, was +13.7%, and the market value of assets at fiscal year end was $68.0 billion. The strong return for fiscal year 2013 exceeded the fund’s assumed actuarial return of 7.75%.

All asset classes beat their benchmarks during the fiscal year except for domestic equities. The total fund return trailed the total fund benchmark for only the second time in the past 11 years.
STRS Ohio’s 2014 Investment Plancalls for only moderate growth in the capital markets in fiscal year 2014.
Fiscal 2013 0perating Expenses Total $4.7 Million Under Budget Final figures for fiscal year 2013 show that STRS Ohio’s total operating expenditures were approximately $4.7 million less than budgeted for the year. Less than expecte…

June Board News

(The text below is reprinted from the news release by STRS on 06/21/2013.)

Retirement Board Chair, Vice Chair Named During its June meeting, the State Teachers Retirement Board elected retired teacher memberRobert Stein as its vice chair for the coming year. According to Board Policies, Dale Price (Toledo Public Schools, Lucas County), who is currently serving as vice chair, automatically moves into the position of chair. Price and Stein will assume their new responsibilities on Sept. 1, 2013.

Retirement Board Accepts the Annual Investment Plan The Retirement Board voted to accept the Investment Plan for fiscal year 2014 (July 1, 2013– June 30, 2014). The plan details staff’s investment strategy for each asset class in the system’s investment fund.

STRS Ohio staff expects only moderate growth in the capital markets during fiscal year 2014. With continuing concern about global financial stress, STRS Ohio will continue to monitor markets to assess risk levels. Investment associates expect th…

May Board News

(The text below is reprinted from the news release by STRS on 05/24/2013.)
Stein, McGreevy Win Board Seats; Correthers Unopposed Retired teacher members Robert Stein and James McGreevy were reelected to the State Teachers Retirement Board in the 2013 election. The term for these seats begins Sept. 1, 2013, and ends on Aug. 31, 2017.

Contributing member Carol Correthers was the only candidate to file enough petitions for her seat; therefore, by statute, no election needs to be held. Correthers will continue in this seat through Aug. 31, 2017.
Board Approves STRS Ohio Health Care Program Changes; Defers Planned Reduction in Health Care Subsidy Level
At the March 2013 Retirement Board meeting, STRS Ohio Member Benefits staff presented several options to consider for 2014 plan changes designed to extend the life of the Health Care Fund. At its May meeting, the Retirement Board took action that will affect STRS Ohio Health Care Program enrollees. Below is a summary of the actions taken by the b…

April Board News

(The text below is reprinted from the news release by STRS on 04/19/2013.)

Operating Budget for Fiscal Year 2014 Reflects Slight Decrease The Finance Department presented proposed system budgets for the 2014 fiscal year (July 1, 2013–June 30, 2014) during the April meeting of the State Teachers Retirement Board. The proposed operating budget totals $90,504,600, a slight decrease from the current year’s budget. The proposed head count of 585 full-time equivalent associates reflects an increase of six positions for the coming year. The budget provides for the continued implementation of pension reform changes, refinements to the Defined Contribution and Combined Plans, and continued development of Health Care Fund options. The proposed capital budget for fiscal year 2014 totals $1,684,300. The Retirement Board will be asked to approve the budgets at its June meeting.

Retirements Approved The Retirement Board approved 191 active members and 118 inactive members for retirement.

Other STRS Ohio…

February Board News

(The text below is reprinted from the news release by STRS on 02/15/2013.)

Funding Status Improves for STRS Ohio’s Health Care Fund
Changes in plan costs and a better than assumed investment return on assets were two key factors that led to a strengthening financial picture for STRS Ohio’s Health Care Fund as of Jan. 1, 2013. At the February meeting of the State Teachers Retirement Board, STRS Ohio’s actuarial consultant, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), presented the results of the annual actuarial valuation of the fund, showing the projected life of the STRS Ohio Health Care Fund now extends to 2060 — an increase of about 21 years from last year’s valuation. Though the report showed improved solvency, the health care program still requires changes in coverage features, program eligibility and/or premium subsidies to attain the three primary goals set by the board.

Costs for the health care program are paid out of the Health Care Fund, which is currently funded through premiums charged to …