Ken Fisher

KEN FISHER

CONCORD — The New Hampshire State Retirement System is ending its relationship with Fisher Investments, and investing the $239 million that Fisher had managed with other firms.

The retirement system joins a growing group of institutions terminating their relationships with the fund after its founder made lewd remarks at a conference earlier this month.

The retirement system provides retirement, disability, and death benefits to thousands of state workers and local government employees, including teachers, police and firefighters.

On Oct. 8, Bloomberg reported Ken Fisher compared the process of gaining a client’s trust to “trying to get into a girl’s pants” and talked about genitalia at a financial services conference.

Fisher initially said he was surprised people found his remarks offensive. But two days later, he issued an apology. “Some of the words and phrases I used during a recent conference to make certain points were clearly wrong and I shouldn’t have made them,” Fisher wrote in an Oct. 10 statement.

Despite the apology, pension funds from Iowa, Michigan and the city of Boston are among the institutional investors taking hundreds of millions of dollars to other investment funds.

On Tuesday morning, the New Hampshire Retirement System’s board voted unanimously to end their relationship with Fisher Investments.

“The recent statements made by Ken Fisher, the founder and chairman of Fisher Investments, are not only offensive and inappropriate, they are incompatible with the values of the retirement system and bring into question Mr. Fisher’s judgment,” read a statement from the system.

A spokesman for Fisher did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday.

The vote to leave Fisher Investments came after the retirement system’s investment consultant recommended terminating the relationship with Fisher.

Fisher Investments had managed about $239 million, or about 2.6 percent of the retirement system’s total $9.2 billion assets, according to a statement from the system.

The retirement system had been using Fisher to invest in major economies outside the United States, a spokesman explained. The $239 million pulled from Fisher Investments will be distributed among four other fund managers who pursue the same strategy.

Material from Bloomberg was used in this report.

Wednesday, December 11, 2019