U.S. institutional assets reached $18.6 trillion in 1999, nearly triple the asset level in 1990, according to The Conference Boards Institutional Investment Report. Pension funds still control the largest block of U.S. institutional assets, with 47.5% of all institutional assets in 1999. Public pension funds have grown the most rapidly, to $2.7 trillion in 1999 from $800 billion in 1990, and now account for 14.5% of total institutional investments, up from 13% in 1990.
Open-ended mutual funds have surged to $4.1 trillion in 1999 from $900 billion in 1990, and now account for 21.9% of institutional assets, according to the report. Public pension funds allocated 69.3% of their total assets to equities in 1999, up from 36.1% in 1990, illustrating the shift from more conservative fixed-income investments.