California’s two giant pensions blazed ahead of their benchmarks to post fiscal-year returns that each topped 20 percent. The $154.3 billion California State Teachers’ Retirement System, said its 23.1 percent return was “remarkable,” adding that it was its best performance in 25 years. Meanwhile, the $237.5 billion California Public Employees Retirement System posted a 20.7 percent return, the best since 1997.
Together, the two pensions are now $66 billion richer than they were at this time a year ago.
Leading the strong returns were public and private equities. For CalPERS, private equity, which accounts for 13.8 percent of its portfolio, returned 25.3 percent for the year, whereas public equities, accounting for 53.4 of the portfolio, returned 30.2 percent. At CalSTRS, private equity, which makes up 14.3 percent of its portfolio, returned 22.5 percent for the year, while public equities, which accounted for 53.4 percent of the portfolio, returned 31.9 percent for the year.