New Jersey Pension Fund, Trenton, sustained a negative return of more than 13% from the beginning of its fiscal year on July 1 through Monday, according to preliminary estimates, due to the plunging stock market’s reaction to the coronavirus outbreak.

CIO Corey Amon described the pension fund’s performance Wednesday at a meeting of the State Investment Council, which formulates policies for the division of investment, the state Treasury Department unit that manages investments for the pension fund. Mr. Amon is director of the division.

“It will be some time” before the division can assess the full impact of COVID-19 on the pension fund, Mr. Amon said. The meeting was held via telephone rather than at its normal Trenton location.

Although Mr. Amon offered the brief comment about preliminary data, the division of investment provided more detailed information about the pension fund during the first two months of 2020 as well as for the fiscal year through Feb. 29.

For the first two months of the year, the pension fund’s return, net of fees, was -3.81% vs. a benchmark of -3.55%.

For the eight months of the current fiscal year, the return was 0.93% vs. a benchmark of 1.95%. Given Mr. Amon’s comments about preliminary results through Monday, these figures illustrate the extreme volatility over just a few weeks.

Read the whole article in P&I Online.

This article quotes selections from “New Jersey Pension Fund returns -13% since July,” by Robert Steyer in P&I Online, 3/25/2020.