Kentucky Teachers’ Retirement Fund Loses $3M After Selling Investment in Russian Bank

INVESTORS: The Kentucky Teachers’ Retirements System sold off its direct investment in a Russian bank the day before Russia invaded Ukraine, losing more than $3M.

The Kentucky Teachers’ Retirement System had invested $15.6 million in Russia’s Sberbank starting in March of 2017. As Russia advanced with its plans of invading Ukraine, the retirement system sold its investments for $12.4 million, resulting in a loss of approximately $3.2 million. 

Sberbank is Russia’s largest lender and saw its shares fall 95 percent over the last week after the bank announced it would pull out of the European market. Social media reports surfaced indicating that the Kentucky Teachers’ Retirement System was the second largest shareholder of Sberbank, leading the retirement system to release a statement saying that it had reduced its investment to less than $1 million. The retirement system called the social media reports “completely false.” The retirement system also stated, “TRS’s remaining exposure to holdings in Russia is proportionately negligible in a portfolio of about $26 million.”

The Kentucky State Treasurer, Allison Ball, said that she was aware that the retirement system “does not currently hold any direct holdings in Russian companies but maintains a foreign investment portfolio that includes minor Russian investments. The Kentucky Employees Retirement System and County Employees Retirement System have direct and indirect Russian investments.” Ball also urged divestment from all current Russian holdings.

The retirement system’s involvement in Russian investments has led other state officials to order reviews to determine if any state money is going to Russian companies or investment sponsored by Russian officials.

If you are a teacher or other member of the Kentucky Teachers’ Retirement System and have information that you would like to share or discuss, please call our firm for a confidential consultation. We represent investors in claims against negligent brokers and brokerage firms. If you or your loved one experienced investment losses, we are here to help. For a free consultation, please call us now at 866-827-3202 or complete our contact form.