Updated, Wednesday, 3 a.m.
The Ivy League saw significantly smaller growth to its endowment returns this fiscal year, with Columbia’s investments producing a return of 2.3 percent, the University announced on Monday. The University’s total endowment stood at $7.65 billion as of June 30.
“In a year when leading endowments earned only modest returns, it is notable that Columbia’s investment managers again placed in the top quartile in our peer group,” University President Lee Bollinger said in a statement. “Over the past decade, our investment performance has consistently outpaced the market and continued to help Columbia compete academically with other great universities that have far larger endowments.”
This year’s return was substantially smaller than last year’s. In fiscal year 2011, the University generated a 23.6 percent return on its investment portfolio, the highest among the Ivy League universities, increasing the total endowment to $7.8 billion. Despite positive returns this year, the endowment shrunk by $150 million.
Columbia remained near the top of the Ivy League in endowment performance among those schools that have released their numbers for this year. Dartmouth posted a 5.8 percent return, while Yale saw a 4.6 percent return.
Trailing Columbia in the Ivy league were Harvard with a -0.05 percent return, Brown with a 1.0 percent return, and the University of Pennsylvania with a 1.6 percent return. Stanford University saw a 1.0 percent return, while Massachusetts Institute of Technology posted an 8.0 percent return.
But Columbia’s endowment can’t compete with Harvard’s, which at $30.7 billion makes Harvard the world’s richest school, or Yale’s, at $19.3 billion.
Princeton and Cornell had not yet posted their fiscal year 2012 statements as of press time.
The 10.4 percent growth of Columbia’s endowment over the past 10 years is also among the highest of peer institutions. The endowment consists of money and financial assets that have been donated to the University for investment by the Columbia Investment Management Company, a subsidiary of the University.
Correction: A previous version of this article stated that Harvard posted a 0.05 percent return, rather than a -0.05 return. Spectator regrets the error.