Even with tumultuous political and economic climate of the past year, the second quarter went well for U.S. venture capitalists

Returns increased across nearly all investment horizons, including 1-, 3-, 5-, 10- and 20-year horizons, according to a report released Thursday by Cambridge Associates and the National Venture Capital Association. The report was based on data from 4,439 venture capital funds. The only time horizon that did not see a jump in returns was the 15-year horizon, in which they remained the same. 

VC Horizons

One-year investments showed the greatest improvement among those in the index, which is based on pooled end-to-end returns, net of fees, expenses, and carried interest. They saw a jump from 4.9 percent returns for the period ending March 31, to 8.9 in Q2 -- compared with 6 percent in the second quarter of 2012.

U.S. venture capital funds continued to underperform public-equity markets relative to public market equivalent benchmarks in the 1-, 3- and 5-year periods, said Peter Mooradian, managing director and private investments research consultant at Cambridge Associates. "But it is important for investors to focus on the more meaningful long-term performance figures," he said.

VC performance for the 20-year horizon showed the greatest returns with 30.1 percent, according to the report. Performance for 10-year investments continued on its upward climb for the 13th consecutive quarter with a return of 7.8 percent.