Permanent Wyoming Mineral Trust Fund (PWMTF) FAQ

When was the Permanent Wyoming Mineral Trust Fund (PWMTF) created?
The fund was created in 1975 by a constitutional amendment that passed on the November 1974 ballot. Governor Hathaway made creation of the fund a requirement before he would agree to not veto a rise in the mineral severance tax.

The history of the fund starts in 1968 when Wyoming's state bank balance was down to only $80. In the next legislative session, Governor Hathaway drafted a bill to institute a severance tax on minerals in the state. Representative Cliff Davis of Campbell County introduced the bill in the January 1969 legislative session. The bill passed by a narrow margin, creating the first severance tax on minerals in Wyoming at 1%. Legislators wanted to raise the tax in 1974 but Governor Hathaway said that he would veto the effort as unnecessary unless part of the money was set aside in a permanent mineral trust fund through a constitutional amendment.
Senator Dick Jones and Governor Hathaway drafted the legislation to create the fund and the amendment appeared on the ballot on November 5, 1974. It passed by a wide margin. With that vote, the PWMTF was created, and for its first thirteen years 2% of severance tax revenues were used to grow the account. Later the requirement was lowered to 1.5% and 0.5% was directed to the state's savings account. Then, in 2005 1% was added to the constitutional requirement, and now 2.5% of severance taxes are deposited in the PWMTF until further legislative action.

What is the current balance of the PWMTF?
The ending balance of the PWMTF in the 2012 fiscal year was $5,440,833,650.

The Wyoming legislature made it a goal for the PWMTF's balance to reach $4 Billion by 2010. They achieved this goal in 2008 when the fund's market value reached $4,135,400,000, when in 1999 the fund had only held $1.5 billion. This was accomplished by not only increasing the amount of severance tax revenue saved from 1.5% to 2.5% in 2005, but also by direct appropriations from the Wyoming State Legislature. In fact, $411,442,146 was provided by direct legislative appropriation from 2001-2009, and $627,317,972 was put in the fund above the constitutional requirement for the same period.

The cost basis of the PWMTF as of March 31, 2013 was $5,859,270,674 and the market value of the PWMTF as of this date was $6,160,179,733.

How much did the PWMTF grow in the last year?
The PWMTF grew by $390,915,948 in the 2012 fiscal year, which was 7.7%. This is down from the previous year's growth of 10.9%.

What year saw the highest growth in the ending balance of the PWMTF?
Not counting the PWMTF's year of creation, the fund grew 79.2% in the 1976 fiscal year. The largest increase since 1982 was 20.3%, which occurred in 2006.

What minerals have made the largest contribution to the PWMTF?
The following minerals compose a majority of the PWMTF. The values are the mineral's total contributions from 1975 to 2010.

Gas 47.79% $2,145,808,048
Coal 26.66% $1,196,989,059
Oil 23.75% $1,066,551,577

What is the total investment income since the PWMTF's creation? From 2002-2012? In 2012 alone?
The total investment income since the PWMTF's creation in 1975 is $3,338,933,647. The total from 2002-2012 is $1,657,173,379 and the total in 2012 was $235,847,144.

What does the State Treasurer's Office investment portfolio look like?
The State Treasurer's Office uses modern portfolio theory to diversify the investments. This means that the State maximizes returns within the limits of acceptable risk by spreading out its allocation of assets among different types of investments. The State Treasurer's Office works with RV Kuhns, an investment advisor, to create and review asset allocation targets to best meet its needs. The fund is currently 42.3% fixed income, 50.0% equities, and 7.1% cash. There is a constitutional limit that no more than 55% of the fund can be invested in equities.

How much of the PWMTF has gone to the general fund since 1975? From 2002 to 2012? In 2012 alone?
The PWMTF sent $3,222,070,291 to the general fund as interest income from 1975-2012; $1,556,590,461 from 2002-2012, during record mineral production; and $235,847,144 in 2012 alone.

The PWMTF contributed $235,847,144 (or 19.59%) of the general fund's revenues in the 2012 fiscal year. It is projected to contribute 12.8% in 2013. A recent high contribution to the general fund was in 2008 when the PWMTF's contribution peaked at 24% of the general fund's revenues.

 

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