The state retirement system was rated among the top five highest-funded pension plans in the country, according to a Department of the State Treasurer release.
The S&P Global report cited proactive management and funding discipline in the success of the state program.
The organization reported that the state had the ability to effectively manage pension liabilities over the long term, and gave the state a AAA rating.
“We are proud to see North Carolina’s pension plans receive another national accolade, but there is still work to be done in sustaining them,” State Treasurer Dale Folwell said. “We are committed to ensuring that our teachers, first responders and state and local government employees have financial stability that can be counted on in their retirement. This ranking is a credit to the monies contributed by state and local employees, taxpayers, through the North Carolina General Assembly and to the investment gains made by the Investment Management Division of the Office of State Treasurer.”
Folwell recently announced that the Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement Systems are funded at 90.4 percent and the Local Governmental Employees’ Retirement System is funded at 95.2 percent.
“While the long-term outlook for most U.S. state pensions remains sluggish, we believe that these five states’ exposure to weak market returns and growing pension costs are significantly limited and manageable, improving our view of their overall credit quality,” the rating report said.
The report also praised New York, Tennessee, South Dakota and Wisconsin in addition to North Carolina.
The Department of State Treasurer’s Retirement Systems Division manages the processing and administration of all retirement benefits for North Carolina state government, local government, law enforcement, judicial, and legislative employees, as well as fire and rescue workers, and all of their applicable beneficiaries.