With a record 56% return, Duke University’s endowment is the latest U.S. college to post notable gains this year, an article in Bloomberg notes. The North Carolina-based school reported a $4.2 billion increase, boosting the endowment to a record $12.7 billion for the June 30th year-end.
Thanks to skyrocketing public markets and investments in private assets, higher education institutions are on track to have their best year since 1986. Washington University in St. Louis posted a 65% return and Vanderbilt University reported gains of 57%.
Every year, Duke takes the averaged value of the endowment funds from the previous 3 years and aims to spend between 4.5% and 5.5% of that on academic initiatives and staff salary. The endowment and other investment income provided $656 million for the fiscal year 2021, which is 23% of their operating budget, the article concludes.