CA Searches for Investors for its High-Speed Rail

James Nash reports that Gov. Jerry Brown is turning to the $6 trillion market in sovereign wealth funds, pensions, and endowments to help fill the $55 billion gap between the project's total cost and what state bonds and federal grants will cover.

Governor Jerry Brown and California state leaders are banking on the increasing interest in public works investments to help fund the most expensive public-works project in U.S. history. "Public works projects have become more attractive to investors seeking stable, if modest, returns in a volatile climate, said Bradley Morrow, a senior consultant for private markets at Towers Watson & Co. (TW), a New York-based professional- services company," writes Nash. “'It’s becoming more accepted as an asset class for institutional investors in North America,' Morrow said, referring to a range of capital projects and not rail specifically."

"The $68.4 billion project, linking San Francisco with Los Angeles, is counting on $10 billion in bonds authorized by voters, $3.3 billion committed by the federal government and as much as $55.1 billion from private sources."

“We have active interest in and outreach to sovereign funds and foreign consortia that are looking at us,” Jeffrey Morales, chief executive of the California High-Speed Rail Authority, said Nov. 29. In addition to sovereign wealth funds, or state-owned investment pools, other potential investors include companies that will build and operate trains and stations, he said."

Full Story: Brown Seeks Sovereign Wealth to Back High-Speed Rail Line

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