Teachers' annual general meeting draws record crowd

April 13, 2012

Roughly 500 members attending the April 12 annual meeting in Toronto heard how the plan managed to overcome the world's economic obstacles and achieve a 11.2% rate of return in 2011, boosting net assets to an all-time high of $117.1 billion. A number of members also tuned in to the webcast.

Neil Petroff, Executive Vice President, Investments, told members that the $1.4 billion in value Teachers' added above our benchmark is equivalent to the annual value of more than 37,000 pensions. Value-added returns stemmed primarily from the private equity, fixed income and infrastructure portfolios.

Teachers' Chair Eileen Mercier said in her opening remarks that, despite these record returns, the plan still faces a $9.6 billion shortfall, which she said the sponsors may resolve this year, ahead of the 2014 deadline. Jim Leech, President and CEO, and Rosemarie McClean, Senior Vice-President, Member Services, explained that historically low interest rates and mounting demographic pressures continue to challenge the plan. Rosemarie noted that our oldest member will celebrate her 110th birthday this spring. For more information on the plan's funding status, visit Plan Funding or www.fundingyourpension.com.

A question and answer session followed the executive presentations.

Over the coming weeks, check back with Pension News Online and the upcoming issue of Pensionwise for an analysis of the plan's results. Detailed information can also be found in the Report to Members.