Canada’s largest pension fund, CPP Investments, stops investing in crypto

One of Canada’s biggest pension funds, CPP Investments (CPPI), apparently contributed to the study of cryptocurrencies. While analyzing digital assets since early 2021, CPPI’s Alpha Generation Lab, the team tasked with examining emergent and trending investments, has supposedly been reassigned somewhere around July 2022.

Canada’s Largest Retirement Fund Stops Investing in Crypto

CPPI currently manages $388 billion for nearly 20 million Canadians, the fund seeking steady returns for retirees. According to news from Reuters, it is reported that Canada’s CPPI pension fund will stop researching investment opportunities in cryptocurrencies. Although it declined to give specific reasons, Reuters said the sudden collapse of FTX in November may have caused CPPI to carefully consider investment strategies.

“You want to really think about what the underlying intrinsic value is of some of these assets and build your portfolio accordingly,” CEO John Graham said in a June speech. “So I’d say crypto is something we continue to look at and try to understand, but we just haven’t really invested in it.”

The department tasked with evaluating cryptocurrencies, Alpha Generation Lab, is rumored to have been reassigned from the job sometime around July 2022. Although no specific justification for the change in strategy has been provided as of this writing, it is certainly at least somewhat influenced by the losses incurred by other significant Canadian pension funds due to Celsius and FTX’s bankruptcies.

It is unclear when CPPI decided to end the plan. One of the sources said the company was actively evaluating investment opportunities by the end of July this year, but the second source said it had wrapped up the work earlier than that.

Although CPPI has stopped investing in crypto, several funds in the same industry have also been caught up in the turmoil of the crypto sector this year. The Ontario Teachers’ Retirement Fund (OTPP), which oversees $242 billion in assets, reported a $95 million loss on its investment in FTX. Earlier this year, Canada’s second-largest pension fund, Caisse de Đépôt et place du Québec (CDPQ), also reported losses of $150 million after the bankruptcy of lending platform Celsius.

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