From The Sacramento Bee

CalPERS is considering ending its 15-year-old ban on tobacco company investments after a consultant said the ban has cost the pension fund roughly $3 billion in lost profits.

The reconsideration of CalPERS’ tobacco prohibition comes as part of a broader re-examination at the big pension fund’s divestment policy. CalPERS spokesman Joe DeAnda said Monday that the fund hasn’t specifically focused on any one investment category, but the tobacco ban looms as potentially the largest issue.

our take

CalPERS has been on the right side of this issue for 15 years. It is stunning that they would consider reversing course in spite of the nearly $200 billion spent in the state on tobacco-related health-care in the last 15 years and the $155 billion in lost productivity that businesses in the state have endured due to smoking in that time.
Robin Koval
CEO and President