Some US Pensions Put PIMCO on Watch List over Gender and Pay Discrimination Lawsuits

Posted on 04/01/2021


Pacific Investment Management Company, LLC (PIMCO), part of Allianz SE, is facing accusations by five current and former female employees alleging gender and pay discrimination, sexual harassment, and other employment issues. The lawsuit was filed in November 2020 being led by PIMCO vice president Sue Collazo and project manager Lisa Anthony. PIMCO has categorically denied the claims alleged in the suit. The asset manager claims the sexual harassment allegations are “salacious and unfounded”.

Amanda Thiem, a former chief assistant to Brent Harris (former chairman of PIMCO funds), claims she was demoted after advances from her boss. She also claims she was sexually harassed by men at the firm. The lawsuit claims PIMCO operates as a fraternity that favors white men.

As with the Fisher Investments controversy, which caused the manager to lose a number of mandates, PIMCO could be exposed to lose investment mandates.

For example, San Joaquin County Employees’ Retirement Association put PIMCO on watch for an emerging markets equity portfolio. This was due to the result of the ongoing claims regarding PIMCO. The pension’s consultant Meketa Investment Group advised on putting PIMCO on the watch list. There is no time frame for the watch status, as the board will probably want to see the outcome of the lawsuit.

The case is Collazo v. Pacific Investment Management Co., 30-2020-01170559, California Superior Court, Orange County (Santa Ana).

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