UNITED STATES - Massachusetts Pension Reserves Investment Management Board and Wisconsin State Investment Board have become the latest pension funds in the United States to plan a global REIT strategy.

Many pension funds in the United States have been heading down this route in recent months as they believe investing in public REITS is a good way to start an international real estate strategy.

Mass PRIM passed a motion at its August 9 board meeting to approve a $200m (€146.8bn) allocation to its first international real estate investment through a global REIT search, having already developed a US REIT portfolio worth $800m-$900m.

The fund currently has assets valued at $50.4bn to June 30 and a 10% targeted allocation for real estate, but has so far invested just 9.2% so there is space for further diversification and gains, according to Lou Canlas, senior investment officer for real estate and timber at Mass PRIM.

"We think that this strategy will give us a good opportunity to achieve strong risk adjusted returns within our real estate portfolio."

At the same time, Wisconsin is in the process of hiring two global REIT managers over the next few weeks, each set to receive an allocation of $200m.

Wisconsin already has a domestic REIT program in the United States, valued at $129m and invested through AEW Capital Management and Heitman.