NM county’s investments probed by state officials

November 10, 2013 • State News

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The State Securities Division has launched an inquiry into Bernalillo County’s investment practices.

The Albuquerque Journal reports ( ) the agency is trying to determine if a turnover of the county’s [auth] $300 million investment portfolio was the result of a misguided effort in pursuit of higher interest rates or something more sinister.

The newspaper reports the treasurer’s office shifted millions of dollars into long-term bonds and cut cash reserves to just over 5 percent in less than 18 months, resulting in potential losses of more than $22 million.

Division investigators have interviewed Treasurer Manny Ortiz, his securities adviser and investment officer Patrick Padilla and others.

Ortiz and Padilla were unavailable for comment.

Last week, county commissioners approved a “no confidence” vote in Ortiz over his investment practices.

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