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Distressed opportunities spurs internal expansion at Maryland

The $35 billion Maryland State Retirement Agency will increase its internal investment team by 25 per cent as it looks to expand its coverage of market activities and take advantage of opportunities in the distressed market.

The investment division, led by chief investment officer Mansco Perry III, manages a global portfolio with significant commitments in private equity, absolute return, real estate, real return and credit strategies, as well as public equities and traditional fixed-income.

The fund has a well-diversified asset allocation with significantly less allocated to public equities than other large US public pension funds.

Its current asset allocation is 36 per cent to public equities, 12 per cent to private equity, 15 per cent to fixed income, 10 per cent to real estate, 10 per cent to real return strategies, 10 per cent to absolute return strategies, 5 per cent to debt-related products and 2 per cent to cash.

A spokesperson for the fund said it was now looking for opportunities in the distressed market place.

The fund is looking to add four senior investment analysts to the internal team of 12, which is also responsible for recommending asset allocation and providing oversight of its more than 100 external managers.

The fund also has an emerging manager program, Terra Maria, which focuses on alpha generation with seven managers contracted to the program.

“This is a good opportunity for experienced investment professionals who would like to play an active role in shaping and strengthening the Retirement System’s portfolio,” Perry said.

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