More than 97 percent of stock in U.S. oil and natural gas companies is held by the public, including many Americans who depend on these earnings to secure their retirements through investments in IRAs, 401(k)s and pension funds. So when oil and natural gas company earnings are strong, it’s good news for retirees. In fact, we conducted a study showing that public pension funds benefit greatly through investments in oil and natural gas industry stocks.
A follow-on recent study showed some of America’s most important institutions – its colleges and universities – realize a significant economic benefit as owners of oil and natural gas companies.
Over the last decade America’s colleges and universities have enjoyed strong returns from their investments in the industry, which have outperformed college endowments as a whole, every other asset class in the endowments, and the S&P 500. While 2.1 percent of endowments in fiscal year 2010-2011 were oil and gas stock, that 2.1 percent generated 5.7 percent of all endowment gains. These gains in turn help college students, and especially those in need of financial support.
The oil and natural gas industry helps make America strong by providing the majority of our energy; by creating jobs; and by investing billions of dollars annually in the communities in which it operates. This means energy security, economic security, and retirement security.