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Lawmakers examine NJ pension fund management

November 24, 2008 4:36:16 AM PST
New Jersey lawmakers are demanding to know how the state chooses state pension fund investments after the fund lost $23 billion so far this year, including $4 billion this month. Managers also invested $49.5 million in each of three struggling hedge funds, just under the amount that would have triggered public scrutiny.

The Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee wants to hear about current practices and future strategies concerning the fund's investment portfolio.

Gov. Jon S. Corzine on Thursday said he would ask the Legislature to allow towns and counties to defer half of their $1 billion contribution to the fund due in April. The move is meant to stave off huge property tax increases.

However, the 700,000 government employees and teachers whose pensions are tied to the fund are worried underfunding will deplete the money they are counting on for retirement.

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