PSP Investments posts 4.4% return in fiscal year 2023, demonstrating resilience and outperforming markets in a challenging environment

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  • Appointment of Deborah K. Orida as PSP Investments’ new President and CEO effective September 1, 2022, adds new deep expertise and global experience to the pension investor’s leadership team.
  • Ten-year net annualized return of 9.2% leads to $31.8 billion in cumulative net investment gains above Reference Portfolio, indicative of long-term added value through strategic asset allocation and active management decisions.
  • Five-year net annualized return of 7.9% leads to $22.3 billion in cumulative net investment gains above Reference Portfolio.
  • Net return of 4.4% exceeds Reference Portfolio return of 0.2%, amounting to $9.5 billion in excess net investment gains.
  • Net assets under management grows to $243.7 billion, up 5.7% from $230.5 billion at the end of fiscal year 2022.
  • Continued focus on risk management supports portfolio resilience in a volatile year for investors.
  • April 2022 launch of inaugural Climate Strategy Roadmap ranks among key strategic initiatives that reflect PSP Investments’ continued momentum to address climate change risk and opportunities in our portfolio and to invest in the economy transition.

MONTRÉAL, June 7, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — The Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments) ended its fiscal year on March 31, 2023, with a 4.4% one-year net portfolio return, demonstrating the benefits of diversification and active management in a challenging market environment. Net assets under management grew to $243.7 billion, up 5.7% from $230.5 billion at the end of the previous fiscal year. Net transfers received from the federal government represented $2.9 billion, while $10.2 billion was generated from net income.  

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PSP Investments takes a long-term investment approach, and measures success at the total fund level through the following performance objectives:

  • Achieve a return – net of expenses – greater than the return of the Reference Portfolio over a 10-year period: By the end of fiscal year 2023, PSP Investments achieved a 10-year net annualized return of 9.2% against the Reference Portfolio return of 7.6%, which represents $31.8 billion in cumulative net investment gains above the Reference Portfolio. This outperformance of 1.6% per annum represents the value added by PSP Investments’ strategic asset allocation and active management decisions.
  • Achieve a return – net of expenses – exceeding the Total Fund Benchmark return over 10-year and 5-year periods: By the end of fiscal year 2023, PSP Investments achieved a 10-year net annualized return of 9.2% against the Total Fund Benchmark return of 7.4%, and a five-year net annualized return of 7.9% against the Total Fund Benchmark return of 5.5%. This represents an outperformance of $31.2 billion over 10 years and $25.4 billion over five years.

During fiscal year 2023, PSP investments continued to generate strong net income despite a challenging market environment, translating into higher assets under management (AUM) at the end of the fiscal year as compared to the end of fiscal year 2022.

“In a challenging year for both equities and fixed income, PSP Investments delivered 4.4% returns for fiscal year 2023, outperforming our Reference Portfolio,” said Deborah K. Orida, President and Chief Executive Officer at PSP Investments. “These results are indicative of the resilience of our diversified portfolio, the quality of our people, and our track record of entrepreneurialism that has supported the development of market-leading capabilities in areas such as infrastructure, natural resources, and private credit. Forward thinking and smart execution have fueled past performance and will become even more important in the coming years.”

“Our strategy to diversify into private markets and expand internationally has been key to maintaining stability in exceptionally volatile financial markets,” said Eduard van Gelderen, Senior Vice President and Chief Investment Officer at PSP Investments. “Our foreign currency exposure is an important component of our portfolio construction approach. This year, it contributed 5.8% to the net return as the euro and British pound rebounded, whilst our open US dollar exposure played its expected role in mitigating the total fund’s downside risk. While we measure performance annually, our long-term results are the best indicator of our capability to fulfill our mandate. Over the last 10 years we are pleased to have generated $31.8 billion of cumulative net investment gains above the Reference Portfolio.”

PSP Investments continued to expand its capabilities and strengthened its talent pool to remain competitive on the global markets, resulting in total operating costs of $760 million compared to $612 million in fiscal year 2022. The total operating costs increase in fiscal year 2023 resulted in an operating cost ratio within range of pre-pandemic levels.

 

ASSET CLASS

(at March 31, 2023)

NET ASSETS UNDER

MANAGEMENT*

ONE-YEAR

RETURN

FIVE-YEAR

RETURN

TEN-YEAR

RETURN






Capital Markets

$98.5B

0.3 %

5.8 %

8.2 %






Private Equity

$37.2B

3.3 %

15.6 %

12.1 %






Credit Investments

$26.1B

13.1 %

8.9 %

11.2 %






Real Estate

$32.0B

0.2 %

6.0 %

9.2 %






Infrastructure

$29.4B

19.0 %

10.5 %

11.7 %






Natural Resources

$12.3B

10.9 %

8.5 %

11.2 %






Complementary Portfolio

$2.2B

(0.2) %

5.8 %

10.1 %

 *This table excludes Cash and Cash equivalents. All amounts in Canadian dollars, unless stated otherwise.

As at March 31, 2023:

Capital Markets, comprised of Public Market Equities and Fixed Income, ended the fiscal year with $98.5 billion of net AUM, a decrease of $1.4 billion from the end of fiscal year 2022. Public Market Equities, which uses a combination of traditional active, alternative investments and passive strategies, ended the fiscal year with a net AUM of $53.4 billion. The five-year annualized return of 7.7% outperformed the benchmark of 6.5%. This performance came as global equity markets were impacted by measures taken by central banks to curb persistently high inflation, the escalation of global political tension, and recent shockwaves sent through the financial sector caused by the US regional banking crisis. Fixed Income ended the fiscal year with a net AUM of $45.0 billion, an increase of $4.3 billion from the end of fiscal year 2022. Its annualized five-year return of 2.4% outperformed the five-year benchmark by 0.3%. Fixed Income’s positive performance in fiscal year 2023 was mainly driven by defensive positioning with a significant short duration bias amid the general bond market downturn caused by a global increase in interest rates.

Private Equity ended the fiscal year with net AUM of $37.2 billion, up $1.8 billion from the end of the previous fiscal year, and generated portfolio income of $1.2 billion. The five-year annualized return of 15.6% outperformed the benchmark of 12.3%, highlighting the strength and the quality of the private equity portfolio, both through co-investments and funds. The growth of the portfolio was driven by $4.6 billion in acquisitions and $2.5 billion in currencies gains. During fiscal year 2023, Mr. Simon Marc was promoted to Senior Vice President, Global Head of Private Equity and Strategic Partnerships, and became a member of PSP Investments’ Executive Committee.

Credit Investments ended the fiscal year with net AUM of $26.1 billion, up $4.2 billion from the end of the previous fiscal year, and generated portfolio income of $3.1 billion. Portfolio growth during the fiscal year was mainly driven by acquisitions of $6.7 billion and foreign currency gains of $1.7 billion. The 8.9% five-year annualized return outperformed the 3.7% benchmark return. Since inception, Credit Investments’ outperformance has been driven by strong credit selection, higher interest spreads versus the benchmark, and upfront fee income. During fiscal year 2023, Mr. Oliver Duff was promoted to Senior Vice President, Global Head of Credit Investments and became a member of PSP Investments’ Executive Committee.

Real Estate ended the fiscal year with net AUM of $32.0 billion, up $0.9 billion from the end of the previous fiscal year, generating a portfolio income of $58 million. The five-year annualized return of 6.0% outperformed the 3.0% benchmark return. Fiscal year 2023 was characterized by a rapid rise in interest rates and changing market conditions that negatively impacted the senior housing sector as well as the North American traditional office sector. Real Estate’s performance was primarily driven by the global logistics and residential sectors.

Infrastructure ended the fiscal year with net AUM of $29.4 billion, a $5.9 billion increase from the end of the previous fiscal year, and generated portfolio income of $4.6 billion. The five-year annualized return of 10.5% outperformed the 4.8% benchmark return. The evolution of the portfolio was driven by acquisitions of $4.2 billion, valuation gains of $1.8 billion and $1.6 billion in currency gains, partially offset by $1.7 billion in dispositions and financing proceeds. The portfolio demonstrated strong performance benefiting from the current high inflationary environment despite generally higher discount rates. The industrials sector, more specifically the transportation sector, was the primary contributor to the portfolio’s income, while the communications sector also contributed substantially. 

Natural Resources ended the fiscal year with net AUM of $12.3 billion, a net increase of $0.7 billion from the end of the previous fiscal year, and generated portfolio income of $1.3 billion. The five-year annualized return of 8.5% outperformed the 3.1% benchmark return. The evolution of the portfolio was driven by acquisitions of $2.7 billion, net valuation gains of $0.4 billion and $0.6 billion in currency gains, partially offset by $0.2 billion in dispositions and $2.8 billion in financing. The portfolio demonstrated robust and resilient performance during a period of rising inflationary pressures, increasing interest rates and global political uncertainty.

Corporate highlights:  

In addition to delivering resilient performance, PSP Investments continued to advance its strategic objectives during the fiscal year.

Key accomplishments for the fiscal year 2023 include:

  • PSP Investments’ Board of Directors appointed Deborah K. Orida as President and CEO effective September 1, 2022. Prior to this appointment, Ms. Orida spent 13 years at the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB), where she most recently served as Senior Managing Director, Global Head of Real Assets & Chief Sustainability Officer, and also held senior management positions in public markets and private equity. Ms. Orida joined CPPIB from Goldman Sachs in New York.
  • We launched our inaugural Climate Strategy in April 2022, which guides our climate-aligned investment targets and active ownership activities across the total fund. We are committed to using our capital and influence to support the transition to global net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050. More information about our climate strategy and our climate-related financial disclosures is available here and here.

Other corporate highlights:

  • We continued to develop our talent and enhance the employee experience while fostering workplace inclusivity and raising awareness around equity, inclusion and diversity.
    • We implemented and evolved our hybrid workforce model to meet changing employee and business needs.
    • We enhanced our health and well-being benefits with increased virtual and mental health support, on-demand childcare services, summer work schedules and improved paid time off policies.
    • PSP Investments continued to rank among Montreal’s Top Employers for a sixth consecutive year.
  • During fiscal year 2023, existing PSP Investments senior management members have taken on expanded responsibilities. Mélanie Bernier, Senior Vice President, Chief Legal Officer, added Human Resources to her responsibilities and was appointed Senior Vice President, Chief Legal and People Officer. Eduard van Gelderen, Senior Vice President and Chief Investment Officer, added Strategic Communications to his responsibilities, bringing together our communications and government relations efforts.

For more information on PSP Investments’ fiscal year 2023 performance, visit our website and download the annual report

About PSP Investments

The Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments) is one of Canada’s largest pension investors with $243.7 billion of net assets under management as of March 31, 2023. It manages a diversified global portfolio composed of investments in capital markets, private equity, real estate, infrastructure, natural resources, and credit investments. Established in 1999, PSP Investments manages and invests amounts transferred to it by the Government of Canada for the pension plans of the federal Public Service, the Canadian Forces, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Reserve Force. Headquartered in Ottawa, PSP Investments has its principal business office in Montréal and offices in New York, London and Hong Kong. For more information, visit investpsp.com or follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn 

Media Contact, Maria Constantinescu, PSP Investments, Phone: (514) 218-3795, Email: [email protected]

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