University of Missouri System pension plan has $315 million deficit

The University of Missouri system of higher education is short on money it owes to future retirees from its member campuses. The total deficit — about $315 million.

System leaders are considering buyouts and opting out clauses for existing plans. The former would cost the system an estimated $19 billion for all members currently enrolled, and which stopped taking on new enrollees in 2019.

To improve its outcomes, the system is also considering new diversity in its investment portfolio. From the Columbia Missourian.

According to documents used in the meeting, the system will also invest more in properties used in the distribution sector and supply chain. Chief Investment Officer Thomas Richards called these investments “recession-proof.”

Moreover, the system will invest more in multifamily homes, such as duplexes and apartment buildings. The plan would also increase investment in private equity — particularly venture capital firms — and funds to biotech and information technology start-ups.

Richards said similar investments have done very well in the past. The university system will also put more money in mid-sized investment vehicles such as investment funds, trusts and limited partnership companies.

Mavis Chan – Columbia Missourian