Things are going well for Stanford University, which just released its financial results for the fiscal year that ended on June 30th. The results are impressive, to say the least. The university has surpassed the portfolio’s composite benchmark return of 3.2 percent, and it has also surpassed the 4 percent median return on large endowments, according to a press release. Stanford, already one of the wealthiest schools in the country, is definitely headed in a healthy direction.
Stanford’s Endowment Management Board, currently headed by Robert Wallace and formerly including veteran banker Thomas Weisel, directs a reported $31.4 billion in university investments, one of the largest endowments held by any school in the country. And this year the value of that endowment rose 3.6 percent after accounting for donations and spending. The fund has seen a return of over 8.7 percent over the last ten years.
“The endowment increased as a result of the generosity of Stanford’s donors as well as positive investment returns, which were augmented by substantial growth in the value of income-generation properties on Stanford’s lands,” explained Randy Livingston, vice president of business affairs and the university’s CFO.
According to the school’s press release, the university’s endowment payout for the recent year was $1.06 billion, or 4.9 percent of the endowment’s estimated value at the beginning of the year. The budgeted endowment payout for the fiscal year was a whopping $1.15 billion.
Stanford’s investment allocations are smartly diversified, and its portfolio includes equities both private and public, fixed incomes, natural resources, absolute returns, and real estate. The investments are likely to grow and grow—it won’t be surprising if these numbers are even bigger for the next fiscal year.
These numbers stem from Stanford’s merged pool, a group that includes endowment assets. The pool’s 10-year performance represents over $3 billion of added value compared to the median results of big endowments, meaning that the school will be able to successfully continue to support future students and programs.