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NYS Pension Fund Drops $16B Amid Pandemic

Mike Groll

New York’s pension fund for public workers has dropped by more than $16 billion because of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a report this week from State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli.

The new total is just over $194 billion. The report called the decline “slight," even though the drop likely means that employers will need to contribute more to the fund.

Last month, a Pew Charitable Trust study on state pension systems in 2018 said New York’s retirement funds are among the highest in the country, but has a history of fluctuating employer costs.

The study recommended that states should try to pay off pension debt and plan for lower long-term investment returns.

DiNapoli said “volatility and uncertainty will persist” until the pandemic is over. He said a stock market boom before the pandemic and the state’s recovery since has already helped the state recover much of its losses.

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