Dow Jones reported that according to Russell/Mellon CAPS, the strong 2003 performance was driven by double-digit returns in each of the major global markets:
- UK equities returned 20.9%
- Continental European markets added 29.3%
- Japanese equities rose 22.8%
- US stocks returned 15.1%.
The strongest overseas performers last year were emerging markets, advancing 40.1%, and the Pacific region excluding Japan, which turned in a 31% gain.
In 2003, index-linked bonds returned 6.6%, overseas bonds 3%, property 7.6% and cash 3.5% – all improvements on 2002.
Over the three years up to December 31, the funds have fallen an average 2.8% a year, the research firm said. Over five years, they’ve produced a positive average annual return of 1.8%, rising to an average 6.3% annualy over the previous 10 years.