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BUSINESS
April 23, 2012 | By Marc Lifsher
SACRAMENTO - Federal securities regulators sued a former chief executive and a former director of the country's largest public pension fund, accusing them of scheming to defraud an investment firm of more than $20 million in fees. The Securities and Exchange Commission filed the lawsuit Monday against the former CEO, Federico Buenrostro Jr., and the former CalPERS board member, Alfred J.R. Villalobos, alleging that they fabricated documents provided to Apollo Global Management in New York.
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BUSINESS
March 18, 2013 | By Marc Lifsher, This post has been updated, as indicated below.
Federal prosecutors in San Francisco indicted former CalPERS Chief Executive Fred Buenrostro and former board member Alfred J.R. Villalobos on Monday afternoon as part of a years-long investigation into possible influence-peddling and corruption. The two former officials of the California Public Employees' Retirement System were charged with fraud and obstruction of justice, according to the U.S. attorney's office in San Francisco. The federal investigation has been probing Villalobos' alleged influence-pedding in winning lucrative contracts for private equity funds that wanted to do business with CalPERS, the country's largest public pension fund.
BUSINESS
February 17, 2011 | By Marc Lifsher, Los Angeles Times
Directors of the California Public Employees' Retirement System endorsed ethics and open-government proposals but put off decisions on stronger measures aimed at avoiding conflicts of interest and self-dealing, issues that have plagued the fund over the last few years. CalPERS wrestled with recommendations from an internal review of operations after it was rocked by claims that it was too cozy with outside investment firms and allowed go-betweens to get exorbitant fees simply for referring deals to many of Wall Street's most powerful private equity, hedge fund and real estate investment managers.
BUSINESS
March 14, 2012 | By Marc Lifsher
Bowing to the realities of a volatile stock market and a weak investment climate, the board of the nation's largest public pension fund lowered its benchmark assumed rate of return. The board of the California Public Employees' Retirement System voted 9-1 Wednesday to reduce its expected average annual return from 7.75% to 7.5%. That was a quarter of a percentage point higher than what had been recommended by its chief actuary, Alan Milligan. The board also agreed to reduce its assumed average annual inflation rate from 3% to 2.75%.
BUSINESS
May 23, 2012 | By Marc Lifsher
SACRAMENTO --Adding weight to a growing backlash over alleged corruption in Mexico, the California Public Employees' Retirement System is withholding its support for the election of nineWal-Mart directors. The $228-billion CalPERS fund said it would not support the officers pending "a thorough and independent investigation into the bribery allegations" involving the company's largest foreign subsidiary, Wal-Mart de Mexico. CalPERS' announcement came a day after its smaller cousin, the California State Teachers' Retirement System, said it is opposing the election of all 16 Wal-Mart directors.
BUSINESS
February 21, 2013 | By Chad Terhune, Los Angeles Times
Dailey Mayo received some stunning news in the mail last week: an 85% rate increase for the long-term-care insurance he has had for 15 years from the California Public Employees' Retirement System. The retired sales manager in Pasadena said his monthly premium of nearly $400 would jump to $738, or about $8,850 annually, under this plan. "I'm 82 now and I might need this care soon," he said. "It really ticks me off that they are doing this. " More than 110,000 CalPERS policyholders are receiving similar news after the pension fund's board approved the changes late last year.
BUSINESS
November 9, 2009 | Tom Petruno and Stuart Pfeifer
For much of the last decade the California Public Employees' Retirement System cultivated the image of a cutting-edge pension fund -- pouring billions of dollars into potentially lucrative but high-risk investments, hounding companies to rein-in executive pay and championing financial security for government workers. Now, CalPERS finds itself caught in a maelstrom of troubles that threatens its reputation as the gold standard for public pension funds. Slammed by huge investment losses in last year's meltdown of financial markets, the nation's largest public retirement plan faces questions about its long-term ability to make good on the benefits it owes more than 1.6 million workers, retirees and their families.
BUSINESS
June 23, 2013 | By Chad Terhune
When the California Public Employees' Retirement System told its Anthem Blue Cross members it would pay only up to $30,000 for a knee or hip replacement surgery, some patients shopped around for a cheaper hospital. What may be more surprising is that about 40 higher-priced hospitals in the state cut their surgery prices significantly to avoid losing patients. That response accounted for about 85% of the $5.5 million CalPERS saved over two years, researchers at UC Berkeley found, with the rest of the savings coming from patients opting for lower-cost hospitals.
OPINION
February 24, 2013
Re “ CalPERS' long-term care rates to surge ,” Business, Feb. 22 I retired as a college teacher in 2009 and had bought my long-term care policy in the late '90s. I was influenced to get it by two factors: I had watched financial advisor Suze Orman on PBS support long-term care policies as a part of retirement planning, and I had watched my father forced to spend down his modest estate to virtually nothing in order to qualify my dementia-suffering mother to receive nursing home care under Medi-Cal.
BUSINESS
July 21, 2009 | Marc Lifsher
California's huge government pension fund is expected to report today a whopping annual loss of an estimated $56.8 billion, almost a quarter of its investment portfolio. The loss at the California Public Employees' Retirement System for the fiscal year ended June 30 is the second in a row for the country's largest fund. A year ago, CalPERS reported an $8.5-billion loss, as the severe recession began to take hold.
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