Reports and Surveys | August 3, 2023

Multiemployer Pension Plans Withstand 2022 Investment Losses

In 2022, multiemployer pension plans faced continued financial market volatility as well as economic uncertainty. Like most investors, multiemployer pension plans lost money last year.

The median 2022 investment return for multiemployer pension plans in our latest survey was -11.9 percent. Nevertheless, nearly three-quarters of those plans remain in the green zone. Moreover, the 2023 average funded percentage (Pension Protection Act of 2006 basis) for plans in the survey was unchanged from 2022.


Asset smoothing helped to soften the blow of double-digit losses.

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What you’ll find in this survey — and why you should care

For trustees of multiemployer pension funds, there’s no greater challenge than navigating your plan through volatile periods. Knowing the details of how similarly situated plans have performed can provide a benchmark for your own plan’s performance.

The survey includes the most current data available from “zone-status” certifications for which Segal is the actuary, of nearly 200 calendar-year plans that were filed by March 31, 2023. As a group, these plans have more than $133 billion in assets and provide benefits to over 2.7 million participants.

This data, combined with the insight we’ve developed from decades of working with multiemployer pension plans, makes this report an invaluable tool for trustees.

You’ll learn:

  • How plan zone status has changed from 2022 to 2023
  • The decrease in the market value funded percentage due to investment losses
  • The impact of asset smoothing on funded percentage used for zone status
  • How Special Financial Assistance under the American Rescue Plan Act impacted plans
  • How “burn rate” impacts a plan’s zone status
  • Industry differences in zone status, burn rate and inactive-to-active ratio
  • Looking ahead, what changes we can expect and how plans can mitigate risks

Seeking trusted advice?

We understand multiemployer plans, having worked with hundreds of them for decades. That experience helps us provide innovative, cost-effective solutions to the challenges funds face. Our unbiased, objective advice allows funds to make decisions in the broader context of other multiemployer plans. Moreover, our ability to aggregate multiemployer data from our extensive client base enables us to determine trends and offer timely advice on emerging developments.

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Slight Change in Zone Status Despite Investment Losses

Most multiemployer pension plans remain in the green zone despite 2022 investment losses. Our infographic shows latest zone-status survey findings.

This page is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, tax or investment advice. You are encouraged to discuss the issues raised here with your legal, tax and other advisors before determining how the issues apply to your specific situations.