Which type of investor are you?

A client message from Jose Minaya, Chief Executive Officer, Nuveen

Nuveen Names Jose Minaya CEO_Hero
Like most everyone I know, I have spent a lot of time reflecting on our pandemic-pressed lives—what we've been going through, where we are headed. And while the past few weeks have tested us all in ways I confess I never thought possible, the suffering and losses have also united us in our commitment to each other. My outlook, by nature hopeful, has become even more optimistic.

I am drawing on–and drawing strength from—the tremendous sacrifices made by the millions of people whose retirements Nuveen helps safeguard in our role as the asset manager of TIAA—the medical professionals on the front lines of the coronavirus crisis and educators who’ve nimbly adapted their classrooms to remote learning and many others whose lives are dedicated to service. I am further emboldened by our responsibility to the thousands of financial advisors serving their own clients and the pension plans and other institutions across 40 countries that count on us to help them succeed in their long-term financial goals.

My colleagues have also come together like never before, not only to uphold our commitment as investment managers, but also as individuals invested in the communities and the world we live in, from donating medical supplies and protective gear to organizing meals for students and the homeless. Nuveen is also reinforcing its dedication to our people so they may continue to serve, expanding childcare, flex time and other benefits.

I am also very proud of the ways we have redoubled our efforts as a provider of long-term, outcome-focused investment excellence. We’ve reached thousands of investors of all types and provided real-time insights, commentaries, videos, conference calls and direct access to our experts to help them evaluate and strengthen their overall portfolios and position for the post-crisis environment we all hope emerges very soon.

100 years of service
At the risk of understatement, the year 2020 has already proved to be one of extraordinary inflection points: When I became the CEO of Nuveen in January, we were over a decade into one of the longest bull markets. By the end of March, we were well into a bear market and grappling with a bona fide 100-year storm: a pandemic that most devastatingly destroys lives but also upends all the “rules” about economics and that may well make the Global Financial Crisis of 2007-08 pale in comparison, as the health crisis decimates supply and demand and tests monetary and fiscal policies.

However, the terrible challenges of the coronavirus are renewing my drive to deliver on Nuveen’s purpose of investing to create an enduring impact on our world, from the “micro” impact of generating lifetime income for a single person to the “macro” impact of creating better long-term outcomes for all of society.

That purpose has been at the heart of our collective mission from our beginning and resonates as powerfully now as it did then. Our parent, TIAA, was founded by Andrew Carnegie in 1918 to create viable retirements for teachers and over time broadened its mandate to serve other not-for-profit populations. (It was the same year that another pandemic, the so-called Spanish flu, had its horrific start, eventually infecting 500 million people, one-third of the earth’s population at the time.) TIAA again broadened—and strengthened—its purpose and resolve in 2014 by acquiring Nuveen, which had its start in 1898 when John Nuveen helped pioneer municipal finance for the purpose of building America’s infrastructure.

Our ability to fulfill our mission through many challenges over a century is, I believe, testament to not only the importance of that mission, but also to our charter as a private company: We serve our plan participants and investor clients, not shareholders.

Together we are better still: TIAA’s exceptionally strong balance sheet, exclusive focus on clients as not-for-profit and long-term vision enhance–and are enhanced by–Nuveen’s broad and deep investment capabilities across geographies and all private and public markets. We have the necessary liquidity and flexibility not only to play defense, but also to respond as new opportunities unfold. And as a private enterprise truly aligned with our clients, we are free from the distractions of managing to a stock price or quarterly earnings and able to focus solely on delivering the best outcomes for our clients and our world.

The next 100 years–and beyond
I am honored to be serving clients like you–and proud to be working alongside colleagues whose sense of mission and purpose is as strong as my own.

We will continue to stay in touch, sharing our insights and offering forward-looking guidance to help you navigate through the crisis. Nuveen’s Global Investment Committee advises maintaining investment plans in line with long-term goals while looking to rebalance opportunistically and making greater use of differentiated returns from alternative asset classes to protect portfolios and position for opportunities on the other side.

We will also remain true to our purpose of investing to create an enduring impact on our world. That means not only delivering investment excellence for you, but also living and working responsibly in everything we do. Those goals have been at the heart of who we are for more than a century, and I am making my personal commitment to you to keep delivering on them.

While I of course don’t know when our lives will return to normal, I believe that together we will persevere. And I promise Nuveen will continue to pursue our purpose on your behalf.

I wish all of you and your families, friends and loved ones safety and health.

Thank you.

Jose Minaya
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