MSCI's InvestorForce Plan Universes had a median net return of 2.07% in the first quarter of 2015.
The median return gross of fees for all plans was eight basis points higher, at 2.15%.
Annualized net returns for the one-, three- and five-year periods ended March 31 were 5.71%, 8.55% and 8.26%, respectively.
For the second straight quarter, corporate defined benefit plans had the highest returns by fund type with a median net return of 2.61%. Taft-Hartley DB plans ranked second (2.19%), followed by public DB plans (2.14%), foundations (2.11%) and endowments (2.09%).
The MSCI ACWI ex-U.S. index gained 3.63% in the quarter and the Russell 3000 index was up 1.8%. The Barclays Capital U.S. Government/Credit index returned 1.84%.
The median allocation for all trust funds as of March 31 was 30.4% U.S. equities, 29.3% fixed income, 14.3% real estate, 14% international equity, 9.3% hedge funds, 3.8% private equity and 1% cash.