Saturday, October 13, 2012

60% stocks, 40% bonds would have been better

The attempt by college endowments to imitate the investment strategies of Harvard and Yale have not done so well.  Unconventional ideas lose their potency if they become conventional, evidently.  Most shocking bit:
Harvard reported a 0.05 percent loss and a drop in its endowment of over $1 billion in the same period, even as a simple Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index fund gained about 5.5 percent. Harvard’s endowment decline is more than the entire endowments of roughly 90 percent of all colleges and universities.
How much is enough for Harvard?

1 comment:

JLM said...

Harvard and Yale (with a return of almost 5% for FY 2012) can still boast of returns averaging 10% or better over the long haul. The scariest finding was this:

"...91 percent of endowments with less than $1 billion in assets underperformed [the 60-40 mix] in every time period since records have been maintained."

And you could probably say much the same about pension funds that have pursued private equity, hedge funds and other "alternatives."