Caisse de Depot et Placement du Quebec, Montreal, returned a net -2.3% on its investments for the six months ended June 30 and reported net assets of C$330 billion ($241.4 billion).
The six-month return is below its benchmark return of 0.8%.
The pension fund attributed the negative return during the period to being overexposed to retail shopping centers within real estate while being underexposed to large technology stocks within equities, two sectors greatly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, a news release said.
"In the first half of 2020, the global economy was hit by a crisis that was unprecedented both in its speed and reach," said Charles Emond, CDPQ president and CEO, in the news release. "With the pandemic having sharply accelerated trends, especially in technology and retail, our significant exposure to shopping centers and our underweight position in certain big tech stocks in equity markets impacted the portfolio's performance in the first half of the year."
Mr. Edmond added that "CDPQ is in a solid financial position to weather the conditions of its business environment and has produced returns that exceed the needs of its clients over the long term."
By asset class, fixed income returned a net 4.1% over the six months ended June 30. Equities, meanwhile, posted a net return of -5% for the first six months of 2020; while real assets returned -7.3% during the period.
For the five and 10 years ended June 30, the pension plan returned a net 8.4% and 8.7%, respectively.
The CDPQ returned a net 4.2% for the year ended Dec. 31.
Returns for the three- and 12-month periods ended June 30 were not provided.