(Bloomberg) -- The California Public Employees’ RetirementSystem, the largest U.S. pension fund, is considering more than doublingits bond allocation to reduce risk and volatility as the stock bullmarket approaches nine years.

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Calpers is looking at a menu of options for its fixed-incometarget ranging from the current 19 percent to as much as 44percent, according to a presentation for a board workshop inSacramento coming up Monday.

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Equities could be cut to as little as 34 percent from 50percent. Stocks were the best-performing asset class in fiscal2017, returning almost 20 percent.

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“The markets have had a pretty good run and it’s possibleCalpers staff is thinking this might be a good time to lock in someof the gains,” Keith Brainard, research director for the NationalAssociation of State Retirement Administrators, said in a phoneinterview.

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Calpers oversaw $343.6 billion in assets as of Nov. 8, up about13 percent this calendar year on a combination of returns andcontributions from employees and taxpayers. The fund lost money inpast bear markets, including about 25 percent in the 12 monthsthrough June 2009 and 7 percent in fiscal 2001.

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Bond yields remain at low levels because of persistent weakinflation, central bank easy money policies and global investorschasing income. Raising the allocation would reduce the fund’sdiscount rate, or average expected return, to 6.5 percent from the7 percent annual target adopted last year. A lower target wouldprobably require bigger contributions from taxpayers and publicagencies to cover pension obligations, a shift that board member JJJelincic said he would oppose.

Screaming employers

“We’ve cut the return expectation to the point that employersare screaming, ‘We can’t afford it. We can’t afford it,’ ” Jelincicsaid. “I personally would be willing to take on a little morerisk.”

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The average allocation for public pensions is about 23 percentto fixed income and 49 percent to stocks, according to Nasradata.

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The Calpers board is scheduled to vote on the allocation inDecember. Almost all of the fixed-income and stock holdings aremanaged in-house while more complex assets, such as private equityand real estate, are overseen by outside consultants. Allocationsto private equity and real assets would stay at 8 percent and 13percent, respectively, under all scenarios under consideration.

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The allocation revisions occur every four years. Calpers isworking to provide for a growing wave of longer-livingretirees.

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