The Brown Investment Office evaluates performance in three ways:
- First, is the endowment achieving its primary mandate of preserving both value and purchasing power after spending?
- Second, is the endowment matching or exceeding the performance of broad measures of the equity and debt markets?
- Third, is the endowment keeping pace with peer institutions that pursue similar mandates with similar resources?
Each of these comparisons is made over appropriate time horizons, as the management of the endowment is guided by a dual mandate to protect and prudently grow its value over the long term. As a result, the endowment is invested in a diverse set of asset classes and conservatively positioned to allow for multiple future macroeconomic scenarios.
Over a trailing 20-year period, the endowment’s annualized return of 8.3% has outpaced the required return of spending plus inflation, as well as the 6.5% annualized return of the S&P 500 Index over the same time period. Over trailing 1-, 3-, and 5-year periods, the endowment’s return places it in the top quartile of college and university peers.
The endowment invests across a variety of asset categories to create a diversified portfolio as evidenced below.
10-Year Average Historical Asset Allocation