The Nova Scotia Public Service Superannuation Plan achieved a return of 5.5 per cent, net of fees, for its 2017/18 fiscal year, according to its latest annual report.

In dollar terms, the plan generated $343 million in total investment income, bringing the plan’s total net assets to $6.4 billion at March 31, 2018.

During the last fiscal year, the plan made significant progress in implementing the target asset mix it established in 2015, according to the report. The transition aims to achieve a combination of 32 per cent fixed income, 28 per cent real assets and 25 per cent equities, among other smaller positions. Currently, the fund is heavy on equities, with international, Canadian and U.S. stocks making up 31.5 per cent of the portfolio.

Read: Vestcor posts 8% return for 2017, buoyed by private equity investments

Looking ahead to next year, risk will be top of mind, the report noted. “High valuations in a number of markets increased market volatility and the impact these factors may have on the fund over the next year will be of prime concern.”

The report also highlighted its plan to grow its membership in an attempt to rebalance an aging demographic profile. Indeed, the plan currently has 17,211 active members and 16,248 retirees, including their spouses and dependants.

“Since it was first implemented in 2015, this membership growth initiative has expanded the PSSP membership by almost 1,700 active members and 700 retirees,” said Ronald Smith, chair of the fund’s trustees, in a press release. “Our guiding principle for membership growth is that it must enhance the long-term sustainability of the plan and be cost neutral to the plan and its existing members.”

Read: Top 100 Pension Funds Report: How best to ensure pensioners get their dues?

Copyright © 2020 Transcontinental Media G.P. Originally published on benefitscanada.com

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