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How Your Pension Fund Became a Casino

Pension-fund managers have proven easy to dupe. Some rule changes would help protect the people on whose behalf they are investing.
Few winners here.                                                         
Few winners here.                                                         

In September 1974, Congress passed a law aimed at ensuring that U.S. companies could fulfill the vast pension promises they had made to millions of employees. Forty years later, that law is greatly in need of reinterpretation.

Known as the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, the law has been widely hailed as a success. It created standards for managing private pension funds that professionalized their operations -- and that public pension funds, which invest on behalf of government employees, have also chosen to adopt.