Municipal Employees’ Annuity and Benefit Fund of Chicago Dives into Private Debt

Link: https://www.marketsgroup.org/news/Chicago-MEABF-Private-Debt

Excerpt:

The Municipal Employees’ Annuity and Benefit Fund of Chicago (MEABF) has added private debt to its portfolio.


The MEABF board voted to work with three managers in the sector, allocating up to $100 million. It approved up to $40 million to both Partners Group Credit Strategy and Angelo Gordon Direct Lending Fund and up to $20 million to Brightwood Capital Fund, Stephen Wolff, MEABF’s investment officer, tells Markets Group.

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Wolff said that the MEABF board approved a dedicated allocation to private debt of 4% in early 2021 and that this search fulfilled the allocation. MEABF had $3.4 billion in assets as of July 31. He said MEABF has in the past had mezzanine investments but has not had a dedicated allocation to private debt.

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As of Dec. 31, MEABF had a fixed income target allocation of 25% and an actual asset allocation of 21%. Its real estate target was 10%, just above its actual asset allocation of 9%. Domestic equities are its largest segment with a 26% target and a 26% allocation. International equities were at 18%, just above its 17% target. Hedged equities, meanwhile, were at 12%, above its 10% target, while private equity was at 3%, below its 5% target.

Author(s): David G. Barry

Publication Date: 21 August 2022

Publication Site: Markets Group

‘Unsustainable’ pension woes hang over Chicago, Lightfoot says: In a speech to potential investors, the mayor combines optimism about the city’s future with a dire warning

Link: https://www.chicagobusiness.com/greg-hinz-politics/chicagos-recovery-clouded-unsustainable-pension-woes-lightfoot-tells-investors

Excerpt:

Coupling a boatload of optimism with a dire warning, Mayor Lori Lightfoot told investors from around the country that Chicago is well positioned to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and is a good place for them to allocate their cash.

But her remarks May 6 were far different on the subject of underfunded city pension funds, a problem that has bedeviled mayors for the past two decades.

Though workers deserve what they’ve been promised, she said, “that promise will not be met” unless Springfield lawmakers come to the table with financial aid or other reforms.

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Lightfoot did not use the word “default.” But some financial experts have warned that some of the city’s four pension funds, particularly those covering firefighters and police, may have trouble paying promised benefits within a few years if they don’t get help.

Author(s): Greg Hinz

Publication Date: 10 May 2021

Publication Site: Crain’s Chicago Business