Playing the Long Game
CPG’s ability to cover the cost of benefits and operations depends on strong investment returns. “Market volatility can be unsettling, which is why we plan for it,” Roger Sayler, CPG’s Chief Investment Officer, says.
The Church Pension Fund investment portfolio, like other large investment portfolios, experienced a downturn in the first quarter of 2020. Fortunately, it recovered substantially in the second quarter and continued to do well in the third.
According to Roger, a highly-skilled investment team and the following key elements of our investment strategy help us navigate economic fluctuations:
- Diversification: We invest in many different kinds of assets, such as stocks, bonds, real estate, private equity, and hedge funds. This mix makes the portfolio more resilient.
- Discipline: Maintaining a methodical investing approach helps us navigate more effectively through volatility. We don’t need to deviate because the time horizon on the portfolio is many decades from now.
- Planning: We prepare for unanticipated market fluctuations related to both the dollar impact on the portfolio and the availability of funds. Our primary obligation is to make benefit payments, so we have to ensure that we have adequate liquidity to do that.
Despite the market upheaval caused by the coronavirus crisis and other events, when everything is said and done, our investment team and strategy remain focused on the long term because the Church depends on us to keep our commitments for decades to come.