Each quarter we pull together the published results of three leading measures of foundation performance, the FoundationMark GIV Index, the Northern Trust Foundation and Endowment Universe, and the foundation subgroup of the BNY Mellon U.S. Master Trust Universe. The results are shown in the table and graph below. Periods ended March 31, 2021 … [Read more...] about First Quarter 2021 Performance Round-Up
First Quarter Returns of 3.8% Push Foundations over the $1.2 Trillion Mark The latest estimates from FoundationMark indicate that foundations cracked the $1.2 trillion mark in total assets just 2 years after breaking through the $1 trillion threshold.Strong equity markets in 2019 and 2020 fueled the growth in assets allowing foundations to increase giving by 15% over the … [Read more...] about Foundation Assets Top $1.2 Trillion
Setting A Course In a related article, Who Controls The Money?, we discussed different approaches to managing foundation assets. In this article we discuss the "Institutional Approach". Of the 45,000 foundations we estimate that only about 5% follow the institutional approach described below that is more common in endowments. It bears noting that the 2,000 or so … [Read more...] about The Institutional Approach
Setting A Course The title of this article, Who Controls The Money?, is intentionally provocative. In the foundation world it is an easy answer, the 150,000 trustees that control the $1.2 trillion in assets and $80 billion in annual giving. A more interesting question might be "How do foundations differ in their approaches to managing their assets?" We have categorized … [Read more...] about Who Controls The Money
Custom Benchmarks In a previous article, Who Controls The Money?, we explored the case that a large part of investment performance is controlled by creating and implementing an investment policy statement (IPS). One factor we highlighted is the use of custom benchmarks. Custom benchmarks are largely the result of the increase in alternative assets. In effect the argument … [Read more...] about Benchmark Limbo. How Low Can You Go?