Quebec pension fund loses $39.8 billion

High-risk investments and global economic crisis behind 25-per-cent drop
||Last Updated: 05/25/2009

The Quebec government has launched an investigation into how the province's pension fund manager lost $39.8 billion in 2008.

The Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, the arm's length agency that manages investments for various public and private pension plans in Quebec, blames falling stock  prices and the quick depreciation of the Canadian dollar for its record losses.

The Caisse, created in 1965 to manage the province's growing public pension plan, saw investments decline 25 per cent in 2008, with the value of assets falling from $155.4 billion to $120.1 billion.