Dartmouth Endowment Yields 18.4% Return in Fiscal 2011

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Dartmouth College’s endowment earned an investment return of 18.4 percent for the 2011 fiscal year, helping to boost the value of the endowment by $415 million to $3.413 billion as of June 30, 2011. The increase in endowment value reflects net investment appreciation plus new gifts of over $40 million as well as transfers, partially offset by distributions to support College programs.

The FY 2011 investment return marked the second consecutive year of double-digit growth, following a 10.0 percent return for FY 2010. Over the longer term, Dartmouth’s endowment has generated an annualized return of 7.0 percent for the 10 years ending June 30, 2011, exceeding the 5.8 percent return for the median institution in the Bank of New York Mellon Endowment & Foundation Universe and 6.1 percent for the median institution in the Cambridge Associates College and University Universe.

Trustee Bill Helman ’80, chair of the Trustees’ Investment Committee, said, “We are pleased with the endowment’s solid performance in fiscal year 2011, which enhanced the flexibility of the portfolio and built an even stronger financial foundation for the benefit of current and future generations of Dartmouth students. The endowment plays a critical role in meeting the College’s educational and research objectives, including providing the best possible liberal arts education for undergraduates alongside excellent graduate programs and professional schools.”

Pamela Peedin, Dartmouth’s Chief Investment Officer said, “The endowment portfolio benefited from the strong equity market rally in the first half of the fiscal year, even while it maintained a slightly more defensive positioning than it has historically. Global public equities and venture capital were the best performing strategies for the year, although all asset classes turned in positive performance.”

Helman continued, “We are grateful to the investment team and external managers who have consistently delivered strong results on our behalf, giving us the resources to make the unique Dartmouth experience possible for our students.”

The Dartmouth endowment funds approximately 20 percent of the College’s annual operating budget. Programs supported by the endowment include Dartmouth’s need-blind financial aid and academic, research, athletic, recreational, and cultural programs.