An Illinois House committee charged with looking into how the state is investing pension funds has held their first meeting. The Pension Investment Committee, headed by House Minority Leader Tom Cross (R-Oswego, pictured), is looking at the state’s pension fund portfolio.
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“If you’re too aggressive with your investments and you end up losing money in any significant way, it’s the General Assembly and it’s ultimately the taxpayer that has to make up that difference,” Cross said. He says it’s the committee’s job to see how state pension fund investments compare to similar investments in the private sector. Marc Levine, a Cross advisor involved in the financial markets for the past 25 years, says in recent years the pension funds have been directing money into more aggressive investments like hedge funds. He says state pension funds’ investments are about 20 percent aggressive. While that means a higher return, it’s also comes with increased risks. Additional meetings are likely before the committee decides if that 20 percent is too much or too little.