Public pension plans have abandoned their 8% return assumption en masse since 2010, accepting that the current investing environment cannot keep pace with that level of return. Using best available survey data, The National Association of State Retirement Administrators found that the majority of plans as of FY 2016 have shifted their return assumptions into the 7.25%-to-7.5% range. Half of the number of plans that targeted a return of 8% in 2005 have maintained that into the current period.
Note: 2016 return assumptions are NASRA's best current data and are subject to change as new information becomes available. Survey included 127 U.S. public plans.