OMERS’ assets rise to $72 bln, returns boosted by private equity

The Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System (OMERS) concluded 2014 with net assets totaling $72 billion and a 10 percent net return, which exceeded its long term funding requirement. Public investments returned a net of 10.7 percent, helped by strong bond prices, while private investments returned a net of 9.5 percent. OMERS’ overall performance was supported by OMERS Private Equity, which showed a 14.4 percent return last year. Its net managed assets currently total $6.7 billion. Borealis Infrastructure turned in a 12.7 percent return, with net assets totaling $12.7 billion. Detailed OMERS’ performance data are found here.

PRESS RELEASE

OMERS Net Assets Top $72 Billion in 2014, with 10% Return

Funded status improves

Toronto (February 27, 2015) – OMERS, one of Canada’s largest pension plans, concluded 2014 with net assets of $72 billion, a $7 billion increase over 2013. OMERS generated a 10.0% return for the year (net of investment expenses), exceeding its long term funding requirement of 6.5% (net), and the prior year return of 6.0% (net).

“OMERS investment performance exceeded the returns required to deliver secure and sustainable pensions to our members. We continue to build a portfolio of high-quality public and private investments, diversified by asset class, sector and geography,” said Michael Latimer, OMERS President and CEO.

Public investments returned 10.7% (net) helped by strong bond prices. Private investments returned 9.5% (net).

In 2014, OMERS received $3.7 billion in contributions from plan members and employers, and paid out $3.1 billion in benefits.

“OMERS continued to focus on the Plan’s long-term health, ending 2014 in a stronger financial position with the funded ratio improving from 88.2% to 90.8%,” said Jonathan Simmons, OMERS Chief Financial Officer. “Our entire team is focused on returning the Plan to full funding, and generating strong value for every dollar contributed by OMERS members and employers.”

OMERS plays a critical role in Ontario’s retirement system and the broader economy. Approximately 18,800 new, active members joined the plan in 2014, driving an increase in active plan membership of 1.7% over the prior year. Almost 135,000 people receive OMERS pensions every month, and nearly 7,900 of them began receiving pensions in 2014.

“At OMERS, our focus is on striving to ensure our members – a diverse group of people serving communities across Ontario – are able to retire with confidence in their pension plan,” said Mr. Latimer.

About OMERS

OMERS is one of Canada’s largest pension funds, with $72.0 billion in net assets and an AAA credit rating. OMERS is focused on providing secure and sustainable pensions to more than 450,000 members. OMERS invests in public and private assets, including publicly-traded equities, fixed income and inflation-linked securities, commodities, infrastructure, private equity and real estate. For more information, please visit www.omers.com.

Media Contact:
OMERS
Neil Hrab
416-369-2418
nhrab@omers.com

Photo courtesy of OMERS