largest U.S. public pension fund has offered an official with
China’s State Administration of Foreign Exchange its top investment
job, according to a Wall
Street Journal report citing “people familiar
with the matter.”
California Public Employees’ Retirement System, better known as CALPERS,
has offered the job of chief investment officer to Ben Meng, the Wall
Street Journal reported Wednesday.
Meng is an official of China’s State Administration of Foreign Exchange,
its foreign exchange regulator.
State Administration of Foreign Exchange is the agency that oversees
China’s foreign currency reserves and was central to its currency
manipulation schemes, according to people familiar with the matter.
has enormous sway over investment in the U.S., managing $360 billion in
assets to fund the state’s retirement obligations to police
officers, firefighters, and other public employees. In 2016, Fortune described
CALPERS as “one of its most influential institutional investors” in the
hadn’t signed an offer letter as of Wednesday morning, according to the
Wall Street Journal
next investment chief would join a fund that is debating the direction
of its roughly $27 billion private-equity program. Calpers, as part of
a review of that portfolio, is exploring plans to farm out billions to
pools that will take stakes in private companies.
moves made by Calpers, which is responsible for benefits to more than
1.9 million active or retired public employees, will be watched
closely in the pension world. The system is considered a bellwether
for investment trends. Calpers and many other public retirement
systems around the country are struggling to meet their return targets
as they try to fill sizable funding gaps.
pick of Meng, who previously worked at CALPERS, is likely to spark
controversy. The Trump administration has increased monitoring on
Chinese investment in the U.S. Placing a Chinese official in charge of
such a large pool of U.S. investment assets will
undoubtedly attract criticism from the administration’s China
by novictim to news