SANTA MONICA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Institutional assets tracked by Wilshire Trust Universe Comparison Service® (Wilshire TUCS®) posted an all-plan median return of -11.87 percent for first quarter and -3.67 percent for the year ending March 31, 2020. Wilshire TUCS, a cooperative effort between Wilshire Analytics, the investment technology foundation of Wilshire Associates Incorporated (Wilshire®), and custodial organizations, is widely considered the definitive benchmark for U.S. institutional plan assets performance and allocation.
“The performance of U.S. institutional plan assets was negatively impacted by both equity and fixed income exposures. Credit markets have deteriorated due to the abrupt shutdown of the global economy, and many investor portfolios had more credit risk than what is indicated by the performance of broad fixed income benchmarks,” said Jason Schwarz, Chief Operating Officer, Wilshire Associates. “Many alternative investments, which are typically implemented to provide diversification to traditional assets, also struggled due to exposure to various segments of credit markets where dislocations have occurred in the very short-term,” Schwarz noted.
U.S. equities, represented by the Wilshire 5000 Total Market Index℠, fell -20.70 percent first quarter and -8.94 percent for the year; meanwhile, international equities, represented by the MSCI AC World ex U.S., fell -23.36 percent first quarter and -15.57 percent for the year. U.S. bonds, represented by the Wilshire Bond Index℠, had a slight 0.93 percent first quarter gain, netting 8.17 percent for the year.
Across all plan types, quarterly median returns ranged from -13.75 to -6.24 percent losses for foundations and endowments and large corporate funds (assets above $1 billion), respectively. One-year returns spanned low and high medians from -5.60 to 3.51 percent for foundations and endowments and large corporate funds (assets above $1 billion), respectively.
For the quarter, all large plan types outperformed the 60/40 portfolio decline of -12.05 percent decline. Large outperformed small across all plan types for both first quarter and the year, due to greater non-U.S. equity exposure. Allocation trends continue to highlight significant exposure for large foundations and endowments to alternatives, with a median fourth quarter allocation of 53.08 percent.
Large corporate plans were the only segment to maintain positive returns for the 12-month period, gaining 3.51 percent.
Large plans (assets above $1 billion) overall posted median losses of -9.50 and -1.37 percent for the quarter and year ending March 31, respectively, while small plans (assets less than $1 billion), underperformed large for the quarter and year at -12.68 and -4.82 percent, respectively.
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