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Lafayette County investment sees strong first quarter

After a strong quarter, representatives from the investment firm handling Lafayette County’s $20 million it earned from the sale of Baptist Memorial Hospital-North Mississippi said they expect to be able to provide a distribution from the fund this year to use in the county’s general fund.

The county’s investment fund balance stands at $21,321,585 and total distributions of $1,117,283, which gives the fund an economic value of $22,438,868.

“We’ve had a good, productive start in the first quarter of the year,” said Steve Sansom with Green Square Capital, the firm the county hired to manage the fund.

Sansom said the county’s fund grew by 2.8 percent in the most recently completed quarter that ended April 30, an increase of nearly $574,294. In 2016, the fund earned a 5 percent return, which amounted to $1,126,386.

The county evenly split just over $60 million in proceeds from the sale of Baptist Memorial Hospital with the city of Oxford in 2012 and invested $20 million of its portion in April 2013 after paying off $10 million in debt.

Sansom said there is enough cash to provide the county with a 3 percent distribution; however, the amount won’t be known until the end of the fiscal year report expected to presented to the Board of Supervisors in June.

Asset allocation is currently 4.6 cash, 57.3 in fixed income and 38.1 in equities.

“After we pay the county the distribution, our goal is to have 40 percent in equities and 60 percent in fixed income,” Sansom told the board. “We had a solid quarter and I expect to have a solid year.”