Having a hard time greasing the wheels of urban development? Look for cash with the union label. The AFL-CIO is encouraging unions to earmark pension mone for investment in frost belt areas, where jobs are tight. Labor officials say banks, insurance firms, and professional mone managers often invest the funds in more lucrative projects in the Sunbelt, creating jobs there. Union officials say members would be willing to put 2 to 5 percent of their money into projects up North that may be of higher than usual risk.
Union pension fund assets now total some $600 billion. Within five years, they are expected to hit $1 trillion.m