MetLife, New York State Common Retirement Fund form real estate JV: Reuters

(Reuters) — MetLife Inc (MET.N), the largest U.S. life insurer, said it has formed a real estate investment venture with New York State Common Retirement Fund, the third-largest U.S. public pension fund.

The venture’s initial investment portfolio, which will be managed by MetLife Investment Management, comprises seven properties valued at more than $1.4 billion, the company said.
MetLife, which sold a 49.9 percent stake in the portfolio to the fund, said it will be the majority owner of the portfolio.

The move comes a week after MetLife said it plans to separate a big portion of its U.S. retail business as it fights federal regulators over its “systemically important financial institution” (SIFI) designation.

That label, created after the massive financial crisis that started in 2007, means regulators deem the company too big to fail and requires MetLife to hold higher levels of capital.

Billionaire investor Carl Icahn is currently pressuring American International Group Plc (AIG.N), another insurer designated systemically important, to break itself up.

Shares of MetLife were marginally down in extended trading on Tuesday.