Most of the time God,Pratt & Whitney or General Electric, will give you another turn in the Barrel.

These are my opinions and my opinions only they do not reflect the opinions of any of my family members or their employer. Note we NOW have NO employers.

Back from a 5.5 Year PCS from the confines of the far Southwest corner of Bundesrepublik Deutschland. The Federal Republic of Germany and Retired.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013


One of my past employment function I was a Quality Assurance Engineer, and one of the critical aspect of my function was benchmarking our processes to our competitors, because I know that I am not one of the smartest guy’s in the room, and that plagiarism is the most since form of flattery, and this is especially true for my investments.
So when I come across an article in the various publications that provide data on how well programs administered by professional managers have performed, I add it to my list of benchmarks for comparison to my investment performance.
Such an article was this one recently posted on the by Martin Z. Braun and Henry Goldman, 2013-05-31, concerning the New York City Pension, Larry Schloss the Chief Investment Officer and the search for in-house investment managers.
In the article some performance numbers for 5 pension/retirement funds were cited.   The New York City Pension, Ontario Teacher Pension Fund, California Public Employees’ Retirement System, Pennsylvania Public School Employees’ Retirement System, and New Jersey’s Pension Fund.
The article reported that the New York City Pension since 2003 has averaged 8.0 percent annual return.  Ontario Teacher has averaged 9.6 percent annual return since 2003.  No end date for this 10-year performance figure was cited in the article. California Public Employees 10 year annual return cited was as of 30 June 2012, and it was reported as 6.1 percent.  Pennsylvania Public 10 year annual return as of 30 June 2012 was cited as 7.2 percent.  Finally the New Jersey Pension 10 year annual return as of 30 June 2012 was reported as 6.4 percent.
These funds are either managed internally, some split between internal and external managers and in one case entirely externally managed.  My portfolio is managed internally.
Well how did I do compared to the professional money manager?  For the period 1/1/2003 to 5/30/2013 my portfolio IRR as calculated by Quicken, was 10.35 percent, for the period 1/1/2003 to 1/1/2013 my portfolio IRR was calculated to be 9.80 percent.  My portfolio performance 7/1/2002 to 6/30/2012 calculated to be 8.90 percent.
Compare that the to reported 8.0 percent for New York City either number is not bad.
Compared to Ontario Teacher Pension reported 9.6 percent, again either number is on par with the professionals.
When I compare my portfolio performance for 10 year period ending 6/30/2012 to reported 10 year annual returns of 7.2 percent for Pennsylvania, 6.4 percent for New Jersey, and 6.1 percent for California pension plans I gain some confidence and validation in the investing strategy that I have chosen for these past 40 years.
By way of another comparison according to calculations provided by following web site the SP 500 annualized return including dividends reinvested for the various periods are as follows.  For the Period July 2002 to June 2012 inclusive the site reported an annualized return of 5.984 percent.  For the period January 2003 to January 2013 the annualized return calculated was 7.256 percent.  For the period January 2003 to May 2013 the annualized return calculated was 7.971 percent.  For easy of comparison I decided to put it into a table

Jul 2002-Jun 2012
Jan 2003-Jan 2013
Jan 2003-May 2013

New Jersey



New York


So how did the professional do against the just the SP500. Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and California did provide more of a return than the SP500.  In the case of Pennsylvania significant majority of their return was just from the SP500.  In the case of New Jersey and California almost all of their return was just from the SP500.
The Ontario Teacher Pension did out perform the SP500 but again I would suspect that a majority of their return was just from the SP500.
In the case of the New York City Pension which slightly out perform the SP500.  I would say just like New Jersey and California almost all of their return was from the SP500, note this fund was managed externally by professionals.
Not a single one of these pension to any degree out perform the market as represented by the SP-500 to any exceptional degree including mine, and why should they, it is one of the basic benchmarks that I know I use and I suspect that the respective management of the various funds use to compare their performance with.

Jan 2002-Jun 2012
Percent SP-500
Jan 2003-Jan2013
Percent SP-500
Jan 2003-May 2013
Percent SP-500

New Jersey



New York


In all fairness these various pension funds, they have a great deal more monies to invest compared to what I have to invest, and that any major movement of capital by them will typically affect the market in observable way.  Any major movement of capital by me would be very insignificant to the market, I just do not have that much, and additionally I take great pains to keep any movements small.
The Pension funds have to content with monthly retirement payments to make, but this should be offset by monthly retirement contributions being made, and at the end of the day I would suspect that this aspect of their management activities is pretty much of a wash.
Finally they have to content with numerous individual account holder making allocation changes, but many if not all have instituted rules that limit how many such events an account holder can perform in attempt to reduce this source of volatility.
My investment strategy has been for the most part very simple, one to be invested, and two to be invested in various low cost/fee broad index funds.  Allocated between Stocks and Bonds on average with roughly 77 percent allocated to Stocks, and 23 percent Bonds.  The Stocks are further allocated between Large Cap Indexes, International Stocks Indexes, and Small Cap Indexes.  The Bonds are allocated between Total Bond Indexes, Long Term Treasuries, Inflation Protected Treasuries, and High Yield Commercial.
Nothing fancy, nothing exotic, and nothing that really requires a great deal of tinkering on my part.
During the course of generating this post I decided that I would be an excellent candidate to manage the City of New York Pension Fund.  So with that thought in mind, here goes.
Dear Mr. Schloss;
With all due respect I am submit my name for consideration to manage the City of New York’s Pension Fund.  I have presented data in this post to indicate that my performance is just as good if not better than what you have received to date.
The salary discussed in the Bloomberg article is quite acceptable.  We would have to hold discussions on other aspects of an employment contract, but nothing that I would suspect that we couldn’t come to some mutual beneficial agreement.  Mr. Schoss my investment method is not rocket science, even though at one time I was a rocket scientist.  My investment method is Open Source, can be found on the Internet with a little searching, and completely transparent.  If you are not so inclined to research my method please E-Mail me and I will provide you with a copy, electrons are free.
Thank you for allowing me this opportunity applying for this position.

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