NC pension fund gained 6 percent in 2014

The North Carolina pension fund returned 6.2 percent in 2014, as real estate and alternative investments helped offset volatility in the stock market.

Investments in stocks, which account for 44 percent of the pension fund's assets, rose 3.7 percent for the year and 1 percent in the fourth quarter, the Department of State Treasurer announced Thursday. Treasurer Janet Cowell is in charge of investing the fund's assets.

Fixed-income investments, such as bonds, rose 8.5 percent for the year and 2.3 percent in the fourth quarter.

Real estate investments rose 19.4 percent for the year and 4.2 percent in the quarter. Alternative investments, such as hedge funds and private equity, increased 14 percent for the year and 1 percent in the latest quarter.

The pension fund's assets totaled $88.8 billion at the end of December, up from $88.4 billion as of the end of the third quarter. The pension fund provides retirement benefits for more than 900,000 workers, including state employees and teachers.

Returns are calculated after fees to money managers are deducted.