The New York Times – Intel Lawsuit Questions Place of Hedge Funds in Retirement Plans

By Gretchen Morgenson – November 20, 2015

“We push the boundaries.”

That’s how Intel Corporation, the respect Silicon Valley computing giant, describes its role as an innovator and creator of value for shareholders, customers and society.

The case against Intel has a different twist. At its heart is this question: Should hedge funds, private equity portfolios and commodities be anywhere near a 401(k) plan?

Bill Parish, a registered investment advisor at Parish & Company in Portland, OR, is a big fan of Intel and owns its shares for his clients. In an interview, he characterized Intel’s retirement plan as “great” but said it would be even better if it jettisoned the hedge funds.

Last year, in an email to Andy D. Bryant, Intel’s chairman, Mr. Parish expressed his concerns about those investments in the retirement plan. Mr. Bryant responded by saying he would forward the criticism to the appropriate Intel officials, according to the email.

“My perspective, regardless of whether it is prudent diversification, is it doesn’t make investment sense,” Mr. Parish said. “It would be better for Intel to eliminate hedge funds altogether because they don’t meet the standard with respect to financial disclosure. They’re too opaque.”