SigRist to make Changes to NC Pensions Plan?

Well, the holidays have past and it’s time new Chief Investment Officer, Kevin SigRist, for the North Carolina Retirement Systems to start working (announced as the new CIO on December 19th, 2012).  He did a good job in Florida, he even made it through a Florida Supreme Court ruling requiring all public employees in Florida contribute 3% of their paychecks toward their retirement plans – some thought it to be unconstitutional.  He won’t have that problem in NC; all public employees are required to contribute 6% of their paychecks each pay period.

It will be interesting to see what changes he implements to our pension system.  Our new republican legislature and executive branch have their own ideas about our pension plan which I assume are different from Mr. SigRist.  In the mean time, here are some interesting facts about NC’s pension fund from the NC Treasurer’s office:

  • North Carolina’s pension fund is $72.4 billion. It is the 14th largest pension fund in the United States and the 32nd largest in the world.
  • North Carolina’s pension fund is consistently ranked one of the best in the country. It is 96% funded (the national average is 80%.)
  • North Carolina is one of only seven states in the United States to maintain a AAA bond rating by three major rating agencies.
  • 95% of North Carolinian public employees retire within the state, allowing pension plan benefits to be reinserted back into the State’s economy.
  • The average public pension in North Carolina is $22,000 per year.
  • Of the 220,000 retirees, less than 300 have an annual pension benefit greater than $100,000.

Sarah Curry

Sarah Curry is Director of Fiscal Policy Studies at the John Locke Foundation.

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