Fund Exceeds Billion Milestone in One Year
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(Washington, DC – March 12, 2012) – The AFL-CIO announced today that $1.4 billion has been funded and committed by 32 pension plan investors to the AFL-CIO Equity Index Fund (“Equity Index Fund”). The Equity Index Fund is a collective investment fund sponsored by the AFL-CIO and available to qualified pension plans. Launched one year ago, in March 2011, the Fund tracks the returns of the broad U.S. large-cap equity market, as represented by the S&P 500 Index.
“The AFL-CIO Equity Index Fund represents a powerful opportunity for pension plans to reduce investment costs while promoting good corporate governance through proxy voting and responsible capital stewardship at the same time,” said Richard Trumka, President of the AFL-CIO.
The Equity Index Fund offers a number of key benefits to pension plan investors. Because stocks in the fund’s portfolio are not actively traded, investment management fees are low: $150 per each million dollars invested (1.5 basis points). In addition, the Equity Index Fund provides investors with daily liquidity while reducing risk through the broad diversification of equity ownership in each of the S&P 500 Index companies.
Michael Stotz, president and managing director of the AFL-CIO Investment Trust Corporation, encourages pension plans to consider the Fund. “Passive investment strategies allow pension investments to track Index performance. And proxies are voted in line with the AFL-CIO Proxy Voting Guidelines, allowing investors to exercise their ownership rights and support important shareholder initiatives on corporate accountability and executive compensation reform.”
Union presidents anticipate increased corporate accountability. “The one billion dollar milestone for the AFL-CIO Equity Index Fund demonstrates tremendous progress toward making workers’ capital work to the advantage of workers,” said John Wilhelm, President of UNITE HERE. Frank Hurt, President of the Bakery Workers Union (BCTGM) said, “There is a collateral benefit in having proxies that are controlled by workers’ pension dollars follow the AFL-CIO guidelines and voted in the interest of plan participants.”
The AFL-CIO Equity Index Fund is managed by ASB Capital Management, a registered investment advisor that has handled Taft-Hartley and Public pension fund investments for more than 28 years. ASB Capital Management currently manages more than $6.5 billion in S&P 500 Index mandates for Taft-Hartley and other labor-affiliated investors.
Contact: Randy Kinder, 202-898-9190, email@example.com