The overall estimated funding ratio of the 100 largest U.S. public pension plans jumped to 75.8% as of June 30 from 73.7% a month earlier, according to the Milliman 100 Public Pension Funding index.
During June, Milliman estimated that public pension plans had an aggregate investment return of 2.9%, with an estimated range of 1% to 5.2%.
The June 30 date represents the end of the fiscal year for the significant majority of U.S. public pension plans.
"Although markets have been fairly volatile over the past year, the 75.8% funded ratio at the end of this June is modestly higher than the 74.0% we saw at the end of June 2022," said Rebecca A. Sielman, principal and consulting actuary at Milliman and author of the Milliman 100 Public Pension Funding index, in a news release Wednesday.
Seventeen plans had funding ratios above 90% as of June 30, up from 16 plans at the end of May, while 23 plans had funding ratios below 60%, down from 24 the previous month.
Also as of June 30, a total of 18 plans had ratios between 60% and 70% (down from 19 as of May 31), 20 plans were between 70% and 80% (down from 22), and 22 plans were between 80% and 90% (up from 19).
As a result of the strong investment returns during June, estimated assets rose to $4.6 trillion from $4.465 trillion a month earlier, while estimated liabilities grew to an estimated $6.07 trillion from $6.055 trillion.