The funded status of U.S. corporate defined benefit plans improved in February as assets rose and liabilities fell, said reports from BNY Mellon and Wilshire Consulting.
The funding ratio of a typical U.S. corporate defined benefit plan rose 510 basis points to 87.5% in February, said the BNY Mellon Institutional Scorecard.
Assets rose 2.1% in February with positive performance from U.S. equity, international developed markets equity and emerging markets equity, according to BNY Mellon. Liabilities fell 3.9% over the month, the result of a 28-basis-point increase in the discount rate to 3.8%.
“The funded status for U.S. corporate plans is now in positive territory for 2015,” said Andrew D. Wozniak, head of fiduciary solutions of the investment strategy and solutions group within BNY Mellon Investment Management, in a news release.
Separately, the typical public DB plan returned 3% on its assets in February, boosted by its allocations to U.S. large-cap equity and high-yield fixed income, which returned 5.7% and 2.4%, respectively, during the month.
The typical foundation and endowment also returned 3%, helped by its allocations to private equity and emerging markets equity, which returned 5.5% and 3.1%, respectively, in the month.
Wilshire Consulting, meanwhile, found the aggregate funding ratio for corporate U.S. pension funds rose 390 basis points to 77.2% in February, as a result of a 1.7% increase in assets and 3.5% decrease in liabilities.
The figures are the result of estimates of combined assets and liabilities of S&P 500 firms that have defined benefit plans.
The estimated asset allocation is 33% domestic equity, 26% long-duration fixed income, 22% international equity, 17% core fixed income and 2% real estate.