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Carpenter funds sell most of interest in Radius Bank
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On June 3, 2016 the New England Carpenters Pension and Annuity Funds and the Northeast (formerly Empire State) Carpenters Pension Funds closed on a transaction reducing their collective ownership of Radius Bank (formerly known as First Trade Union Bank) from more than 99% to less than 5%. The New England Carpenters Pension Fund received $14,320,185.96 and the Guaranteed Annuity Fund received $8,007,144.59 in addition to shares representing a 2.49% interest (valued at approximately $1,158,000) in the Bank’s reorganized holding company. A group of private investors now owns 95% of Radius, and they invested an additional $18 million of new equity capital to be used towards the Bank’s growth.

The decision to reduce the Funds’ ownership position in Radius was prompted by concerns over the application of the "Volcker Rule" in the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act which prohibits banks and their affiliates from making many of the types of investments that are traditionally held by pension funds. An unintended consequence of the Volcker Rule forced the Funds to terminate their controlling interest in the Bank in order to have the ability to make a broad range of prudent investments necessary to meet their obligations to their participants and beneficiaries.

“It is the end of one chapter and the beginning of another in our relationship to the Bank,” said Mark Erlich, chair of the New England Carpenters Benefit Funds. “The proceeds of the sale will be invested in our Funds in accordance with the existing asset allocation.”

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