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Christian Torres / AP

Three California state legislators have introduced a bill that would require state pension funds to divest from companies involved in building or maintaining President Trump's proposed southern border wall.

Why it matters: The nation's two largest public pension systems — The California Public Employees' Retirement System (CalPERS) and The California State Teachers' Retirement System (CalSTRS) — are managing more than half a trillion dollars in combined assets. Not only does that make them major stock and bond market players, but they also have deep holdings in private equity funds that often own construction and building materials companies.

What the pensions are saying: Nothing publicly yet, but the top spokesman for CalPERS twice tweeted a Pensions & Investments editorial that savaged the proposal as "unacceptable interference in the fiduciary investment duties" of state pension funds.

Precedent: Some California pensions do have divestment policies, covering such things as tobacco companies, firearms companies and investments in countries like Sudan. Sometimes it's driven by legislators, sometimes by its own board. In general, the systems believe that if the divestment runs counter to fiduciary objectives, then there must be some other net positive for pensioners. For example, the CalPERS decision on tobacco was rooted in public health concerns. There also was a divestiture bill recently introduced related to companies helping to build the Dakota Access Pipeline, although it has not yet gotten a vote. CalPERS was a signatory to a letter asking participating banks to address or support the rerouting requests of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe.

Go deeper

Trump bump: NYT and WaPo digital subscriptions tripled since 2016

Data: Axios reporting and public filings; Chart: Axios Visuals

The New York Times and The Washington Post have very different strategies for building the subscription news company of the future.

The big picture: Sources tell Axios that the Post is nearing 3 million digital subscribers, a 50% year-over-year growth in subscriptions and more than 3x the number of digital-only subscribers it had in 2016. The New York Times now has more than 6 million digital-only subscribers, nearly 3x its number from 2016.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
1 hour ago - Energy & Environment

Biden's emerging climate orbit

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

As of Tuesday morning, we know a lot more about President-elect Joe Biden climate personnel orbit, even as picks for agencies like EPA and DOE are outstanding, so here are a few early conclusions.

Why it matters: They're the highest-level names yet announced who will have a role in what Biden is promising will be a far-reaching climate and energy agenda.

Janet Yellen is back

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Hannelore Foerster/Getty Images

A face familiar to Wall Street is back as a central player that this time will need to steer the country out of a deep economic crisis.

Driving the news: President-elect Joe Biden is preparing to nominate former Fed chair Janet Yellen to be Treasury secretary.