U.S. pension plans, endowments and foundations in the Northern Trust Universe returned a median 3.5% in the first quarter of 2010, according to a Northern Trust news release.
Corporate pension plans had the highest median returns, at 3.7%, followed by public pension funds, at 3.6%, and endowments and foundations combined, at 3.3%.
The roughly 300 plans in the Northern Trust Universe constitute a combined asset value of about $637 billion.
“Returns in the first quarter were driven by higher-risk segments of traditional asset classes,” William Frieske, senior performance consultant, Northern Trust Investment Risk & Analytical Services, said in the news release.
As of March 31, corporate pension plans had three-year median annualized returns of -0.2%, while public funds and endowments and foundations returned a median annualized -1%. For the five-year period ended March 31, corporate pension plans returned a median annualized 4.7% and public funds and endowments and foundations returned a median annualized 4.4%.