Could California pension system be underwater?

Rolling up big paper profits on stocks and other capital investments during 2017 and most of 2018 was very easy, and the California Public Employees Retirement System, the nation’s largest pension trust fund, took full advantage of the opportunity.

Its strong earnings, particularly in 2017, narrowed a yawning gap between its assets and future liabilities for pension payments to state and local government workers.

But it was short-lived and CalPERS has not only regressed but could actually be underwater because of a new way of calculating its liabilities.