Institutional Investors Still See Losses in Q109

May 7, 2009 ( - While the performance of institutional investors' portfolios improved during the first quarter of 2009, all categories were all still in negative territory, according to the Wilshire Trust Universe Comparison Service (TUCS).

Foundations and endowments saw the best median quarterly returns at -4.78%, with an annual return of -25.71%. The median performance of all master trusts for the year ended March 31, 2009 was -24.71%, with a quarterly return of -5.53%, according to the TUCS data.

The median performance of corporate pension plans was -26% for the year and -6.31% for the quarter, while public pension funds median performance was -25.93% for the year and -5.92% for the first quarter. The quarterly median return for Taft Hartley funds was -5.14%, with the one-year at -22.66%.

Corporate plans with assets of more than $1 billion suffered the worst median performance at -7.09% for the quarter. The one-year median rate of return for these same plans was -25.45%, Wilshire said.

The quarterly median rates of return for all master trusts and public pension plans with assets greater than $5 billion were both -6.57%, with those same public plans reporting median one-year performance of – 27.55% and all master trusts doing somewhat better with a median annual return of -27.20%.

According to the Wilshire TUCS Equity Style Analysis, small cap value stocks had the worst performance for the first quarter of 2009 with a median total return of -15.19%. “The best performance came from mid cap growth managers which reported a median rate of return of -4.39%, followed by large growth managers with a -4.84% median performance,” noted Hilarie C. Green, CFA, managing director and head of Wilshire Analytics’ Performance Reporting division, in the report.

Wilshire TUCS includes nearly 1,200 plans with $2.43 trillion in assets.