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Wilshire Tucs Shows Institutional Investors' Performance Continues to Improve

The performance of institutional investors' portfolios continued to improve in the second quarter with median returns ranging from 7.55 percent for Taft Hartley funds to 10.93 percent for corporate plans. However, median performance for the year ending June 30, 2009, lagged with all categories still in negative territory. Taft Hartley plans had the best 12-month median performance at -16.08 percent with the worst median performance of -19.14 percent notched by foundations and endowments, according to the Wilshire Trust Universe Comparison Service (Wilshire TUCS ), a cooperative effort between Wilshire Analytics, the investment technology unit of Wilshire Associates, and custodial organizations. Wilshire TUCS, the most widely accepted benchmark for the performance of institutional assets, includes more than 1,100 plans representing $2.04 trillion in assets.

All master trusts had a median quarterly return of 9.77 percent and a median 12-month return of -17.00 percent. Corporate plans saw an annual median return of -16.84 percent while public funds racked up a 10.86 percent median quarterly return and a -17.06 percent median performance for the year. For foundations and endowments the median quarterly return was 10.66 percent.

“The U.S. stock market saw a $1.5 trillion paper gain during the second quarter as the Wilshire 5000 Total Stock Market IndexSM marked its first positive quarter since a 1.46 percent increase during the third quarter of 2007,” said Hilarie C. Green, CFA, managing director and head of Wilshire Analytics’ Performance Reporting division. “At the end of the quarter, U.S. stocks had gained 38.33 percent since their recent low on March 9, 2009, which reduced the market sell-off to -38.30 percent since the Wilshire 5000’s high in October 2007. Each individual month within the quarter enjoyed a positive return, as June’s narrow 0.35 percent gain represented the market’s fourth consecutive up month,” she noted.

Green noted that according to the Wilshire TUCS Equity Style Analysis, “Size, as measured by market capitalization, was the stronger factor in performance this quarter for equity managers. Small cap managers had the best performance returning 21.79 percent, followed by mid cap at 18.56 percent and large cap at 15.96 percent,” she said. “The impact of style was smaller with value managers posting a median return of 18.26 percent and growth managers returning 17.04 percent. With regard to fixed income, high yield managers did very well this quarter compared to the other types of fixed income manager styles,” Green concluded.