Monday, March 30, 2009

From the "Sink your life savings in a boat" Dept.

Boston Globe story on the federal Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation:
Just months before the start of last year's stock market collapse, the federal agency that insures the retirement funds of 44 million Americans departed from its conservative investment strategy and decided to put much of its $64 billion insurance fund into stocks.

... Bodie, the BU professor who advised the agency, questioned why a government entity that is supposed to be insuring pension funds should be investing in stocks and real estate at all. Bodie once likened the agency's strategy to a company that insures against hurricane damage and then invests the premiums in beachfront property.

... The Government Accountability Office is preparing a new review of the investment policy, but in the meantime it continues to place the agency on its list of federal programs at "high risk."

David Kurtz at Talking Points Memo comments, "Bush was able to do for the PBGC what he tried and failed to do for Social Security."

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