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- January 2008: Vol. 20 No. 1

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Investing in Good Governance: Subprime-Related Losses Stir Up the Conversation

by Rachel McMurdie

When the Florida State Board of Administration invested about $2 billion in structured investment vehicles (SIVs) and other debt instruments on behalf of its local government investment pool, the board, which also oversees the $138 billion Florida Retirement System Pension Plan, thought it was investing in a relatively safe account, one that happened to pay a little more interest than a bank would. But when the mortgage crisis and downgrades of asset-backed debt held in the portfolio began to drain funds from the bottom line, it became apparent that the investments were far from risk-free. The lower credit ratings and the looming prospects of loan defaults produced a run on the Florida fund that totaled $13 billion of

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