Canadian corporate and public pension plans returned an overall 2.9% in the second quarter on the strength of global and Canadian equity investments, said RBC Investor & Treasury Services' quarterly survey.
The overall return was far better than the -0.03% return of the first quarter, RBC said in a news release on the survey results. The return for the second quarter 2015 was -1.6%.
Canadian plans' global equity investments returned 1.6% in the second quarter vs. -6.2% in the first quarter; both were ahead of the MSCI World index's 1.4% and -7.2%, respectively.
Canadian equity investments returned 4%, down from 4.6% in the previous quarter but still riding on the strength of the energy sector, which was up 9.5% in the second quarter as crude oil prices rose. However, Craig Wright, senior vice president and chief economist, warned in the release that the overall Canadian economy could have a weaker second quarter because of the shutdown of oil sands production resulting from the Fort McMurray wildfires in May.
Fixed-income holdings returned 3.1% in the latest quarter, up from 1.8% in the first quarter. Both surpassed the FTSE TMX Universe Canadian bond benchmark of 2.6% and 1.4%, respectively.
The RBC pension fund universe has a combined C$650 billion ($493 billion) in assets.