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How we invest

We think that the best way to achieve our mandate is to have a growth-oriented, diversified portfolio. We are opportunistic investors; our strategies play to our natural advantages such as our long time horizon and our liquidity tolerance.


Our investment beliefs complement and underpin our endowments and act as a key driver of our investment decisions.

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We have four "endowments" or competitive advantages - core features of the Fund that are derived from how we were established and which help guide us in our investing decisions.

Balancing risk and return

Our Act requires us to "maximise returns without undue risk to the Fund as a whole". The key decision for our portfolio is to determine what balance of risk and return is appropriate. This decision establishes the ratio of growth to income assets in our portfolio.

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Reference portfolio

We use a Reference Portfolio, which is set by the Guardians’ Board, to benchmark the performance of our actual investment portfolio and the value we are adding through our active investment strategies.

Actual portfolio

The real-life composition of the Fund at any one time is called the Actual Portfolio. It is the sum of all the investments we have made which reflect the Reference Portfolio, plus any value-adding "active" investments.

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Investment managers

We can manage an investment ourselves or we can contract a third party, an external investment or asset manager, to manage it for us.

Responsible investment

The Guardians has a long-standing commitment to Responsible Investment. We believe environmental, social and governance considerations, including climate change, are fundamental to long-term risk and return.

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Investing in New Zealand

Here you’ll find an overview of how we invest in our home market of Aotearoa New Zealand, including information about a New Zealand investment directive issued by the Government that helps inform our approach.