US - Public pension funds had the best returns in a poor first quarter of 2008 which saw institutional investors loose an average -5.28% on their investments, according to Wilshire Associates.
Hilarie C Green, managing director and head of Wilshire Analytics' performance reporting division, said: "The performance we saw in the first quarter was expected based on market turmoil globally."
Green continued: "Here in the US, the equity market suffered its worst quarterly loss since the third quarter of 2002 with the Dow Jones Wilshire 5000SM posting a -9.52% return as the first three months of the year each returned negative results."
Larger public and company-run pension plans with over $1bn in assets fared marginally better than the average corporate scheme.
The average equity holding for all schemes was 57.83% of the portfolio, with a sliding upward scale from a smaller exposure leading to a better return in Q1 2008.
Enhanced powers for The Pensions Regulator (TPR) to prosecute and fine company directors who "wilfully or recklessly" put their defined benefit (DB) pension scheme at risk will be hard to enforce, commentators say.
Melrose has pledged to contribute up to £1bn to GKN's pension schemes as part of a final offer to acquire the engineering business.
Existing master trusts will be forced to pay £41,000 when applying for authorisation under the upcoming regime, the government has confirmed.
UPDATE 2 - DWP publishes DB white paper: Stronger powers for TPR, DB chair statements to be introduced
The Pensions Regulator (TPR) will be given the power to fine company bosses who deliberately puts their defined benefit (DB) schemes at risk, the government has confirmed.