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Top plans surpass their targets

Data released by Milliman in its 2017 corporate pension plan study showed that returns among the top 100 plans have exceeded their long-term expected returns in six of the past eight years. Long-term expected returns typically are annualized return targets the plan expects to experience over an investment horizon of five to 10-year, and possibly longer.

Asset allocations over the period showed equity allocations have declined to 36.1% from 45.7%, while fixed-income holdings increased to 44.1% from 35.8%. Allocation to other asset classes, including alternatives, ticked up slightly from 2009 to 2016 but remain around 20% of total plan assets.