The state has sent more pension money to big-name Wall Street firms like Blackstone, Third Point, Omega Advisors, Elliott Associates and Grady’s old firm, The Carlyle Group. Additionally, the amount of fees the state pays financial managers has more than tripled since Christie assumed office. New Jersey is now one of America’s largest investors in hedge funds.
The “maximized returns” have yet to materialize.
Between fiscal year 2011 and 2014, the state’s pension trailed the median returns for similarly sized public pension systems throughout the country, according to data from the financial analysis firm, Wilshire Associates. That below-median performance has cost New Jersey taxpayers billions in unrealized gains and has left the pension system on shaky ground. Meanwhile, New Jersey is now paying a quarter-billion dollars in additional annual fees to Wall Street firms — many of whose employees have financially supported Republican groups backing Christie’s reelection campaign.
Maui Sunset (June 18, 2014)
Art changes the world.
A journey into Yellowstone Valley required days of arduous travel via rail stagecoach and mule train in the 1870s. Moved by images like this one by Jackson, the government designated the area a national park in 1872.
Today is the 98th Birthday of the National Parks Service.
Old Faithful, 1870, William Henry Jackson. J. Paul Getty Museum.
FACT: For every $1 we invest in our national parks, our economy sees $10 in return. Get out to a national park today (admission is free) to celebrate the 98th birthday of the National Park Service.
“People want to be bowled over by something special. Nine times out of ten you can forget, but that tenth time, that peak experience, is what people want. That’s what can move the world. That’s art.”
― Haruki Murakami, South of the Border, West of the Sun