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10/01/2005

Harvard Endowment Tops $25 Billion


(Cambridge, MA) Harvard University President Lawrence Summers announced today that its endowment fund has passed the $25 billion mark, and conceded that "we don't know exactly what we are going to do with all this cash."

Summers noted that the fund has surpassed the wildest dreams of its founders.

"Yeah, the fund is larger than the GNP of 155 countries," he said, waving a wad of T-bills. "Trouble is, we are running out of places to stuff all this dough."

The university, according to Summers, embarked in a "cash-at-any-cost" philosophy in the 1980s, and the hard work of its fundraising arms has been remarkable.

"We pretty much expect every department to become a cash cow, both in terms of revenue and investment," he said, eyes twinkling a pale green. "Scholarship? There's no money in that, is there?"

Investments in equities posted the year's best return, at 34.7 %. Foreign investments achieved the best benchmark performance with a 20.3% return. Summers said that he will pocket "a really phat bonus" this year for the school's financial success.

Sumnmers said that the endowment growth creates many opportunities for the university.

"We only spend 5% on current expenses at the university, so we have a lot left over to play with," he said. "Even after shrinkage by our investment managers, we are still churning out about $5 billion a year that we have absolutely no use for. This is wild!"

Comments:
Puts them on a par with insurance companies and the Catholic Church, not that either of them would admit it...
 
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