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Cornell sees 10.6 percent return on FY18 investments

Cornell University’s endowment returned 10.6 percent for the year ending June 30, bringing its total investments to $7.2 billion.

The performance was led by the endowment’s private equity investments, global equities and enhanced fixed income.

“We have restructured our portfolios over the last 12 months and are pleased that they have outperformed our strategic benchmark by about 110 basis points. We continue to expect strong performance in fiscal year 2019 as the portfolios reap a full year’s benefit,” said Girish V. Reddy, M.Eng. ’78, MBA ’80, Cornell trustee and chair of the board’s Investment Committee.

Over the last year, the Office of University Investments made several changes to its portfolio strategy and management, including revamping its benchmarks, strategic asset allocation, managerial lineup, operational capabilities and informational systems. These efforts are intended to boost performance over time, increase endowment flexibility, reduce fees and improve responsiveness to changing investment trends.

“Following deep-dive reviews, we’ve implemented an interrelated set of initiatives aimed at improving the portfolio’s strength and resiliency, and those began to come to fruition in fiscal year 2018,” said Kenneth Miranda, chief investment officer. “We expect to continue to see the effects of those improvements as we move forward.”

The office also completed its move to New York City, where it is now based and fully operational.

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John Carberry