- March 2012: Vol. 24 No. 3

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Slow and Steady: The Annual Plan Sponsor Survey

by Larry Gray

New commitments to real estate by pension funds are expected to remain somewhat muted in 2012 due to a variety of inhibiting factors, including domestic and global political and financial market uncertainty, limited liquidity in the debt capital marketplace and the transaction marketplace, an overhang of approximately $68 billion of previous capital commitments that are on the sidelines waiting to be invested, and a narrowing gap between target real estate allocations and actual allocations. Despite these factors, real estate commitments are expected to increase 17 percent in 2012, and investors continue to rank the asset class as the most attractive option on a risk-adjusted basis.

If “slowly does it every time,” as the tortoise told the despondent hare after his upset victory over his more speedy, but less disciplined opponent, then U.S. pension funds are back on track.

Most pension funds learned their lesson when they got off course during the go-go day

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