The median return of all plans in the BNY Mellon U.S. Master Trust Universe was -4.67% in the quarter ended Sept. 30.
The third quarter marks the second consecutive quarter of negative performance. The median return was -0.02% in the second quarter.
Additionally, only 3.4% of plans surveyed posted a positive return for the quarter, compared with 48% in the second quarter.
Corporate defined benefit plans were the highest-returning plan type for the quarter, returning a median -4.03%, followed by health-care plans, -4.22%; Taft-Hartley plans, -4.72%; endowments, -4.76%; public DB plans, -4.93%; and foundations, -5.28%.
Real estate posted the highest median quarterly return for the universe at 3.14%, followed by U.S. fixed income at 0.52%. At the other end, U.S. equities returned a median -7.44% for the universe, non-U.S. equities, -11.47%; and non-U.S. fixed income, -3.57%.
Twelve-month returns were also negative for all six plan types that BNY Mellon monitors.
The universe returned a median -0.68% for the year ended Sept. 30, the lowest median annual return since the year ended Sept. 30, 2011. Endowments had the highest median return for the year at -0.48%, followed by Taft-Hartley plans, -0.65%; public DB plans, -0.7%; corporate DB plans, -0.75; health-care plans, -1.02%; and foundations, -1.08%.
Longer term, for the five and 10 years ended Sept. 30, the universe returned an annualized median 7.51% and 5.81%, respectively.
The universe comprises 595 plans with a combined market value of more than $2.1 trillion and an average plan size of $3.6 billion.