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Pension News

OMERS reports 2019 results

February 24, 2020

Diversified portfolio delivers net investment return of 11.9%

2019 Highlights:

  • Net return of 11.9% or $11.5 billion

  • Funded status of 97%

  • Net assets of $109 billion

OMERS, the defined benefit pension plan for Ontario’s municipal employees, reported a 2019 investment return of 11.9%, net of expenses. The 2019 performance exceeds last year’s net return of 2.3%, which was impacted by more challenging stock market conditions. OMERS funded status on a smoothed basis improved to 97% in 2019.

“Our high-quality, well-diversified portfolio produced strong results for our members in 2019,” said Michael Latimer, CEO, OMERS. “All asset classes generated positive returns, led by public equities.  Over the past five years, we have earned $9.8 billion of net investment income over the amount required to fund our pension obligations.”

Net return history

1-year

3-year

5-year

10-year

11.9%

8.5%

8.5%

8.2%

“OMERS funded status has improved for the seventh consecutive year,” said Jonathan Simmons, CFO. “The 2019 improvement in our funded status primarily reflects our five-year net investment return of 8.5%.”

OMERS paid pension benefits of $4.6 billion in 2019 to more than 170,000 members.

In closing, Michael Latimer said, “Similar to many pension plans across the globe, OMERS is experiencing demographic and social shifts that will make our future different from our past. Our strategy is focused on making OMERS a sustainable, affordable and meaningful Plan, while managing challenges across the pension landscape.

“I want to thank all OMERS employees around the world for their diligence and commitment to our members in everything they do.”

About OMERS

Founded in 1962, OMERS is one of Canada’s largest defined benefit pension plans, with $109 billion in net assets as at December 31, 2019. OMERS is a jointly-sponsored pension plan, with 1,000 participating employers ranging from large cities to local agencies, and over half a million active, deferred and retired members. OMERS members include union and non-union employees of municipalities, school boards, local boards, transit systems, electrical utilities, emergency services and children’s aid societies across Ontario. Contributions to the Plan are funded equally by members and employers. OMERS teams work in Toronto, London, New York, Amsterdam, Luxembourg, Singapore, Sydney and other major cities across North America and Europe – serving members and employers and originating and managing a diversified portfolio of high-quality investments in public markets, private equity, infrastructure and real estate.

Media Contact: Neil Hrab, +1 416-369-2418, nhrab@omers.com

Net Investment Returns for the years ended December 31

2019

2018

Public Investments

Fixed Income

  • Inflation-Linked Bonds

7.1%

-0.4%

  • Government Bonds

1.2%

-0.6%

  • Credit

8.0%

3.1%

  • Fixed Income

6.7%

1.8%

  • Public Equity

20.3%

-8.3%

Total Public Investments

16.4%

-4.6%