About CASE

Pam Russell
Director of Communications


Jan. 23, 2008

CASE Statement on 2007 Endowment Study by NACUBO

Statement by John Lippincott, president of the Council for Advancement and Support of Education

WASHINGTON, D.C.- The National Association of College and University Business Officers' endowment study shows that college and university endowments realized strong investment returns in the fiscal year ending on June 30, 2007. These additional resources will help institutions enhance access and support for low- and middle-income students, fund cutting-edge research and support critical academic programs for both current and future generations.

While the 2007 investment returns were strong, the study's June 30 end date means that it does not account for the weakening of the financial markets that occurred in the latter half of the year. And as the U.S. economy continues to struggle into 2008, it is unlikely that the colleges and universities participating in the study will match their 2007 investment returns in the current fiscal year.

Given the volatility of financial markets, endowment performance is best evaluated over the long term. Institutions participating in the NACUBO study had an average annual endowment investment return of 8.6 percent-half of the single year 2007 rate of return-over the last decade. Colleges and universities were able to weather the economic downturn of the early 2000s through prudent endowment management practices, including the selection of an appropriate spending rate. As we face the prospect of another economic downturn, it is critical that colleges and universities retain the flexibility to determine endowment spending rates that will help them meet both current and future needs.

Our colleges and universities should be commended for the wise investment practices that have generated these excellent returns. Their work will help educational institutions remain strong in both the near and long-term future. NACUBO's ongoing initiative to benchmark endowment returns provides a valuable service to the educational community.

About CASE

CASE believes in advancing education to transform lives and society. As a global nonprofit membership association of educational institutions, CASE helps develop the communities of professional practice that build institutional resilience and success in challenging times. The communities include staff engaged in alumni relations, fundraising, marketing, student recruitment, stakeholder engagement, crisis communications and government relations. CASE is volunteer-led and uses the intellectual capital of senior practitioners to build capacity and capability across the world.

CASE has offices in Washington, D.C., London, Singapore and Mexico City. Member institutions include more than 3,700 colleges and universities, primary and secondary independent and international schools, and nonprofit organizations in 82 countries. CASE serves nearly 88,000 practitioners. For more information about CASE, please visit www.case.org.