Pension Funds Including DE&I Queries in RFPs for Money Managers

The Institutional Investor reports that some pension funds and other allocators are making diversity, equity and inclusion questions a part of their hiring process. For instance, the Los Angeles Employees Retirement Association since 2018 has been asking prospective asset managers who responded to requests for proposals about diversity within their company ranks. The questions target areas such as the money manager’s internal practices, how they evaluate diversity at their portfolio companies or the fund managers they engage with,   details on the ethnicity of its board, executives, investment professionals, and investment support workers. The report notes that current requests for proposals for the Illinois State Universities Retirement System and the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System also included questions on company diversity.  Meanwhile, major firms continue to publicly disclose information on the makeup of their staff with Goldman Sachs being the latest to reveal such data. In its latest sustainability report, Goldman described its diversity goals and initiatives and its current demographics. And according to a report in ThinkAdvisor, of Goldman’s 1,548 U.S. executives, senior officials and managers, 49, or 3.2%, identified as Blacks, and Blacks constituted 6.8% of Goldman’s U.S. workforce. CEO David Solomon in a letter to shareholders noted that the firm “made good progress on our aspirational diversity and inclusion goals. … We set additional goals for retaining and promoting talent at the vice-president level. And our most recent partner and managing director classes were the most diverse in our firm’s history.”