Doña Ana County

RODRIGUEZ: COUNTY SEES 70 PERCENT INCREASE IN INVESTMENT PORTFOLIO

RODRIGUEZ: COUNTY SEES 70 PERCENT INCREASE IN INVESTMENT PORTFOLIO

             In his annual investment presentation to the Doña Ana Board of County Commissioners Tuesday, county treasurer Eric L. Rodriguez reported a 70 percent increase in investment earnings – a significant spike over recent years.
             The detailed report showed an increase in earnings from $734,000 in fiscal year (FY) 2018 to $1.2 million in FY 2019. That’s also a 145 percent increase from earnings in FY 2017, which totaled $509,000. Rodriguez attributes the increase in earnings to a proactive investment strategy that he has adopted in the last two years.
            “We manage cash flows very closely to maximize the earnings on every dollar,” explained Rodriguez. “Increased interest rates alone are not enough to yield these types of returns.”
            In addition to the report on investment earnings, Rodriguez provided a breakdown of the portfolio’s composition, which includes over $14 million invested in local community banks. Many of the county’s holdings are in low risk, prime credit or FDIC insured securities, ensuring that the county’s risk exposure is minimal. By state law, county treasurers are only allowed to invest in low risk fixed income securities, which meet the portfolio’s primary objective for safety. According to the report, the portfolio meets all of its objectives, which include safety, liquidity, and return.
            “Return on investment is not our primary objective, so an unanticipated increase in yield is an added benefit for the community,” said Rodriguez.
             The county has a projected revenue budget of $138 million in FY 2020, of which investment income makes up only 1 percent. Rodriguez says he is on track to increase this number for coming fiscal period.
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