SAN FRANCISCO, April 12 California's pension
fund for teachers made official on Friday its plan to divest
holdings in firearms companies whose weapons are illegal in the
The California State Teachers' Retirement System will now
sell holdings in two publicly traded gunmakers Sturm, Ruger & Co
and Smith & Wesson Holding Corp. The investments are worth about
The divestment plan has been in play since January at the
$161.5 billion pension fund after State Treasurer Bill Lockyer
advanced it in response to the mass shooting at the Sandy Hook
Elementary School in Connecticut in December.
Lockyer sits on the board of the fund, best known as
Calstrs, and also pressed it to divest holdings in manufacturers
of high-capacity ammunition magazines that are illegal for the
general public in California.
The Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting involved a type of
semi-automatic rifle banned in California and sparked a national
debate regarding gun control with some pension funds flexing
their financial clout to weigh in on the issue.
Lockyer also sits on the board of the California Public
Employees' Retirement System, the biggest U.S. public pension
fund. Its investment committee voted in February to divest
holdings in Sturm Ruger and Smith & Wesson in a move affecting
about $5 million in investments.