Thursday, December 20, 2012

California Teachers Were Gun Company Investors

Who at the California teachers pension system was so asleep-at-the-switch that it allowed an investment in a firm owning and buying up gun manufacturers - - including the maker of the very assault-style Bushmaster semi-automatic rifle used in the Connecticut school massacre?

And the teachers money was hardly peanuts:

The California State Teachers' Retirement System (CalSTRS) committed to invest a whopping $500 million into a $7.5 billion Cerberus fund that has helped bankroll Freedom Group. That means that it effectively could own a 6.67% stake in the gun maker, which filed to go public in late 2009 before pulling the offering in early 2011. In fact, the figure could be even higher since CalSTRS also committed $100 million to a $1.4 billion predecessor fund, which likely made the original investment.
Granted the teachers pension system pressured the investment company to sell its controlling interest in the gun conglomerate - - Freedom Group - - and could take a loss, but how did the teachers group put itself in this position in the first place.

Freedom Group had gathered up Bushmaster, Marlin, Remington and other brands.


Anonymous said...

Oh come now - these huge pension systems just look at the bottom line. They're just looking out for their fiscal well being. I wonder if living was brought into consideration.

Sue said...

I believe several WI public employee unions were looking into moving banking and investment accounts out of corporations who were heavy supporters of Walker. Updated information on that would be a post I'd like to see.

Reagan's Disciple said...

So when can we start blaming the CA teachers pension plan for gun violence... or has that just started here... now?

Anonymous said...

Sue, most public employees are in the Wisconsin Retirement System which is managed by Department of Employee Trust funds. The unions don't manage their own pensions.