WRS Operational Update

WRS appreciates your patience, given the rapidly-changing nature of the COVID-19 health situation we are all facing. There will be no disruption in the payment of benefits. Ongoing operations of State government is absolutely critical to public health and safety, even as we have employees working from home and as we encourage members to schedule appointments at our offices.  The safety of our employees and our members is of utmost importance to us at WRS.  To that end, we want to share the precautions WRS is taking to keep our employees and members safe and what you can expect in the days ahead. 

WRS Service Changes

Members will see some temporary changes in how we interact with members.  We plan to continue delivering a high level of service, responding to your needs and answering your questions.  Notwithstanding, we are moving to limit the public’s physical presence within state offices to promote the safety of both our State employees and our members.  Phone and web-based communication is the preferred method of communication to decrease on-site public traffic. Whenever possible, members still needing on-site counseling access to our offices are encouraged to call first and schedule an appointment.  Document drop-off service is still available at our office.

All WRS services will be available online and over the phone

  • Counseling. WRS Staff encourages you to prearrange your On-site counseling.  Please call (307) 777-7691 to schedule an appointment.  

  • Registering for meetingsEducators will not be traveling in April and all group meetings have been canceled until May and an updated travel schedule will be posted as soon as possible. Educators Travel Schedule

  • Appointments. Member Benefit Specialists and Plan Educators are available 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday - Friday by calling (307) 777-7691.

     

     


WRS Benefit Payments

WRS benefit recipients will continue to receive benefit payments as scheduled either through direct deposit/EFT or by paper check. There will be no disruption in the payment of benefits. 


If you currently receive a paper benefit check, WRS recommends having your check directly deposited into your bank account instead. You can submit the Direct Deposit by Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) form online if you have a User ID and password. Or, you can download, print, and mail the Direct Deposit by Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) form

Investment Update

Investment Update

  • The WRS portfolio is well-diversified and professionally managed.  The fund has stock market exposure of course. WRS was down an estimated 12.5% year-to-date, as of 3/12. This compares to the S&P 500 being down 23.2%.  

  • The portfolio has sufficient safe assets and interest generating components such that WRS can pay the monthly pension for years without selling any stocks. At the beginning of March, the portfolio held approximately $2 billion of fixed income securities and cash, with more than $1.5 billion in US Treasury securities and cash.  

  • While it is always painful to see equity prices down, market volatility is an opportunity to obtain high-quality assets at better prices. 

  • Pensions are a shock absorber, providing predictable income to families and communities regardless of market conditions.  

  • As the market was starting to slide at the end of February 2020, WRS issued:

    • $46.5 million to 23,083 members in Wyoming

    • Another $12.5 million to 8,035 members outside Wyoming

    • That's $59M to help stabilize families and communities

    • The next pension payroll is 31 March with similar numbers. 

    • Last year’s annual total was $642 million with $500 million of it to Wyoming members.

(A detailed report of Wyoming's $46.5 million in February is attached with information by county and zip code within the State).