Research Center

As a part of our corporate mission, we aim to educate our clients and investors in the various components of institutional investing. Through industry leading benchmark studies, events and conferences, whitepapers, and other publications we provide research and education to our investors, our clients and the communities our clients serve.

TOPIC

INDUSTRY

TYPE

POPULAR ARTICLES


Private Capital | Articles

What’s the Difference? Time-Weighted Return vs. Internal Rate of Return

Investors often ask about the difference between time-weighted return (“TWR”) and internal rate of return (“IRR”). In general, TWR is used by the investment industry to measure the performance of...

Perspectives | Press Releases

2019 Council on Foundations-Commonfund Study of Foundations Released

National Study Reports Strong Investment Results in 2019 Increased Foundations’ Intermediate-Term Returns   Data from the Council on Foundations-Commonfund Study Show Spending in Support of Mission...

Investment Strategy | Videos

Investment Strategies for Long-Term Investors

Kris Kwait, Deputy CIO and Head of Investments, discusses investment strategies for long-term investors in the current market environment.  

Stay connected with the Insights Blog



Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | Low Rates Make Record Government Debt Manageable – For Now

Few people would have predicted that U.S. equity markets would be higher today than at the start of 2020 if told that a virus would infect over 7.0 million people in the U.S., cause over 200,000...
Perspectives | Press Releases

2019 Council on Foundations-Commonfund Study of Foundations Released

National Study Reports Strong Investment Results in 2019 Increased Foundations’ Intermediate-Term Returns   Data from the Council on Foundations-Commonfund Study Show Spending in Support of Mission...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Should We Issue an Investment Manager RFP? 7 Key Considerations

Best practice for nonprofits is to issue a Request for Proposal (“RFP”) for an investment management partner every market cycle. Typically, that is at least every 7 to 10 years, or as it is...
Investment Strategy | Videos

Top Hedge Fund Investors - Ten Years Later

In July 2010, I published the book Top Hedge Fund Investors: Stories, Strategies, and Advice. My co-author and I interviewed nine leading allocators to hedge funds, including one Mark Anson, who...
Private Capital | Articles

Secondaries During the COVID Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the world in unprecedented ways. There is still much uncertainty including about when a vaccine will be ready and how schools reopening in the fall will...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Balancing Purpose, Payout, and Permanence: A Strategy Guide for Foundations

In partnership with the Council on Foundations, the National Center for Family Philanthropy has released Balancing Purpose, Payout, and Permanence: A Strategy Guide. Commonfund Institute is very...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | Inflation Expectations Surge, Driving Real Interest Rates Down

Chairman Powell’s speech at Jackson Hole during the last week of August confirmed the Fed’s dovish policy stance, giving investors ample support in terms of low rates and a flexible inflation...
Diversity | Insights Blog

Investing in Racial Equity: A Primer for University & College Endowments

Commonfund and Commonfund Institute are very happy to contribute to the new report from Intentional Endowments Network (IEN), “Investing in Racial Equity: A Primer for University & College...
Responsible Investing | Press Releases

Diverse Manager Portal Re-opens

WILTON, CT (August 24, 2020)— Commonfund, a prominent asset manager for endowments, foundations and public pension investors, announced today the re-opening of its online Diverse Manager Portal (“The...
Perspectives | Press Releases

Commonfund Appoints Terrence Hill, Managing Director, OCIO Business

WILTON, CT (July 30, 2020) — Commonfund, a leading asset manager for nonprofit organizations, today announced the appointment of Terrence (Terry) Hill as Managing Director, Business Development. In...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Observations on Diverse Manager Selection Across Asset Classes

At Commonfund, we believe diverse managers offer clients access to investment talent and valuable investment opportunities and therefore should be explored and invested in. Overlooking the merits of...
Governance And Policy | White Papers

Principles of Investment Stewardship for Nonprofit Organizations

The Principles of Investment Stewardship for Nonprofit Organizations provides an overview of essential principles for fiduciaries that oversee long-term funds.
Market Commentary | Articles

Fiscal Year-End and Mid-Year 2020 Market and Investment Review

As we enter the new fiscal year, and Commonfund’s 50th year of operations, we leave behind what will likely be remembered as one of the most challenging and memorable fiscal years for the...
Governance And Policy | Videos

Cultural Institutions and the COVID-19 Crisis

Board members, investment committees, and senior staff are charged with the fiduciary responsibility to make informed decisions when guiding the investment activities of their organization. The...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Capturing Credit Opportunities in Times of Crisis

Key takeaways During periods of dislocation in high-quality credit, investors should  stay the course within fixed income portfolios and maintain active risk to benefit from the inevitable rebound...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | Markets are Running Ahead of Economic Reality

When investors open their second quarter investment reports, many will be shocked by the magnitude of stock market gains in the second quarter. Their surprise could be voiced by a rhetorical question...
Governance And Policy | Articles

Changing the Conversation on College and University Resources

William Massy has spent his entire career at the intersection of academia and administration, as a microeconomist; professor, dean and CFO at Stanford University; author; and now, an independent...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Real Estate – Can’t Touch This!

Few markets have been as heavily impacted by the onset of the global pandemic as real estate.  Real estate is considered a hard asset that “you can touch and feel”, but during a pandemic no one wants...
Investment Strategy | Videos

Enhancing Investment Stewardship with Fund Governance Analytics

Strong board performance is critical for every organization dedicated to achieving its mission, which is why Commonfund Institute makes it our mission to advance best investment stewardship...
Investment Strategy | Articles

Increasing Giving During COVID-19: Thoughts for Philanthropy

The Council on Foundations has acted to support its members, their nonprofit partners, and the people and communities hit hardest by the impacts of COVID-19 by asking members to sign a pledge of...
Diversity | Insights Blog

Diversity and Inclusion: Ways to Make a Change

Across the United States, citizens are gathering to protest the unjust deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery; each of these individuals fell victim to police brutality and racial...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Balancing Risk and Return

Risk surrounds us, and for investment fiduciaries it is inescapable if meaningful real returns are to be sought. While risk and return constitute the axes upon which investment portfolios are built,...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | Measuring Social Distancing with Mobility Trends

We continue to monitor the level of social distancing as an indicator for business activity and improvement in consumer sentiment. Personal spending experienced the largest month-over-month drop on...
Governance And Policy | Press Releases

AGB and Commonfund Announce New Strategic Partnership

Enhancements to resources for investment management come at critical time for endowments WASHINGTON, DC, June 4, 2020 — The Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB), the...
Diversity | Insights Blog

In Remembrance

The senseless killings of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and most recently, George Floyd have once again brought the scourge of racism to the forefront of our nation’s conscience. For many Americans,...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

When Will this Crisis End? 3 Keys to Recovery

When will this crisis end?  Following are three key issues fiduciaries should keep in mind concerning COVID-19 and this pandemic recession and recovery. The path and trajectory of COVID-19 This is...
Investment Strategy | Articles

Nonprofit Leaders Spotlight | Rochelle Witharana, Chief Financial Officer, California Wellness Foundation

With nearly $1 billion in assets, The California Wellness Foundation (Cal Wellness), is one of California’s largest public health philanthropic institutions. Cal Wellness awards approximately $43...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Seven Ways to Diversify Your Private Capital Portfolio

A strong private capital program requires consistent, diversified investing over time. It is also necessary to have— or obtain externally— resources for research and due diligence before you invest;...
Governance And Policy | Videos

Stewarding Foundations Through the COVID-19 Crisis

The COVID-19 crisis has put tremendous strain on local communities across the country and foundations have been asked to rise to the challenge while endowments have declined in value due to market...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Stewardship During This Crisis: Five Things for Boards to Consider

As the world continues to grapple with the social, economic, and public health implications of the current COVID-19 crisis, nonprofit organizations and their boards are working tirelessly to...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | The Fed Rides to the Rescue

The Federal Reserve is determined to support the economy and the normal functioning of capital markets during the COVID-19 pandemic. As of April 29th, the total asset size of the Fed’s balance sheet...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Crisis Response: A Framework for Strategic Decisions

With the equity markets retracing some of the losses that occurred in the first calendar quarter of 2020, endowment market values are likely recovering more quickly than we may have feared during the...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Five Key Points of the Investment Policy Statement

The central document guiding the management of a nonprofit institution’s endowment—essentially, the strategic plan of the investment committee—is the investment policy statement (IPS). The IPS should...
Governance And Policy | Articles

Intergenerational Equity and Sustainable Investing

Intergenerational equity was defined by economist James Tobin in 1974. He wrote, “The trustees of endowed institutions are the guardians of the future against the claims of the present. Their task in...
Market Commentary | Videos

An Insider's Guide to the Chinese Economy

Commonfund CEO and CIO, Mark Anson, hosted Leland Miller, CEO of China Beige Book. Mr. Miller shared his proprietary research and insights in this exclusive session for Commonfund Forum registrants....
Responsible Investing | Videos

Examining the Sustainability Conundrum

Sustainable investing, sometimes called ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) investing, has been a hotly contested topic for years. And the debate continues with both supporters and naysayers...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

COVID-19 and Nonprofits | Five Observations from China

Although the full effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on U.S. nonprofits will not be known for some time there may be something to learn from what we’re seeing in China. China was the first country to...
Private Capital | Articles

Private Capital Secondaries | An Overview

COVID-19 is impacting the world in unprecedented ways. Today, it is estimated approximately 75 percent of the U.S. population or, almost 250 million people, are staying at home. Globally, over 1.5...
Governance And Policy | Videos

CARES Act | Implications and Opportunities for Nonprofits

On March 27, 2020, President Trump signed into law the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act”), establishing the largest aid package in our nation’s history. The $2...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Do Bear Markets Favor Active or Passive Investing? It Depends.

In the ongoing debate about active versus passive investing, conventional wisdom posits that active investing outperforms passive in recessionary or bear market environments. The question is: Will...
Market Commentary | Articles

Higher Ed in the Age of COVID-19

Commonfund convenes an expert panel to take on the short- and intermediate-term threats that higher education confronts in the face of a national emergency the likes of which have not been seen for...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | The Dangers of Timing a Bear Market

It has been well documented that trying to avoid market downturns by selling out of stocks and moving to cash can be damaging to long-term portfolio values. And while there are strong behavioral...
Governance And Policy | Articles

How Can Trustees Achieve Intergenerational Equity in the Face of Rising Costs?

The Commonfund Higher Education Price Index® (HEPI) is an inflation index for colleges and universities. It has been calculated since 1983 and includes inflation data going back to 1961. Commonfund...
Governance And Policy | Videos

Higher Ed in the Age of COVID-19 - A Panel Discussion

With COVID-19 exploding every expectation of normalcy in U.S. higher education, Commonfund convened a panel of experts to identify, analyze and offer potential responses to the critical challenges...
Responsible Investing | Insights Blog

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: Staying the Course in Uncertain Times

The times we are living in are unprecedented. On March 11th, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared that the spread of COVID-19 constituted a global pandemic. Currently, in the U.S., the virus...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

10 Tips for Stewarding People Remotely

Six key words – Purpose, Policy, Process, Portfolio, People, and Perspective – form a framework for effective endowment stewardship. As trustees, investment committee members, and senior management...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Coronavirus: Five Key Questions for Nonprofit Institutions

There is no question that we are in unprecedented times and will likely remain so for longer than we anticipated even a few weeks ago. The speed at which a new reality has been imposed on all of us...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | A Price War Erupts in the Oil Market

Oil prices declined over 21 percent on March 9, 2020, the largest single-day decline since January 1991 during the Gulf War[1]. There was optimism prior to the OPEC (Organization of Petroleum...
Responsible Investing | Articles

Viewpoint | Responsible Investing: Evolution, Not Resolution

In recent years, responsible investing has received mounting levels of attention from all quarters of the investment management field, from institutional investors large and small to global asset...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Market Commentary: Impact of the Coronavirus on Markets and Portfolios

After a strong calendar year 2019, the S&P 500 reached its most recent all-time high on February 19, up nearly 5 percent since the year began. Now, a week later, the global equity markets have fallen...
Private Capital | Insights Blog

How to Select a Private Equity Manager

Are you are considering investing directly with a private equity manager? If you opt to go direct, you will be tasked with selecting, managing and disposing the assets entirely on your own. It may be...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Study of Independent Schools Key Highlights [Infographic]

For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2019, independent schools reported a 5.7 percent return in endowment assets. In this infographic, we report the key highlights from the 2019 Commonfund Benchmarks...
Perspectives | Press Releases

2019 Commonfund Benchmarks Study® of Independent Schools Released

Independent Schools Report 5.7% Return on Endowment Assets for FY2019 Investment Results Are Lower than Previous 2 Years but at Mid-Point of 5-Year Returns; 10-Year Returns Show Sharp Increase...
Responsible Investing | Articles

The Sustainability Conundrum

Sustainable investing, sometimes called environmental, social, and governance (ESG) investing, has been a hotly contested topic for decades, an the debate continues with both supporters and naysayers...
Investment Strategy | Articles

Optimize Luck

Instead of just optimizing for skill, why don’t we optimize for luck? Optimize Luck originated in a group discussion I facilitated for the Investment Institute, a membership organization for...
Private Capital | Videos

Commonfund Manager Spotlight | Ardent Venture Partners

Commonfund Board Member, Michael Warren, interviews Phil Bronner of Ardent Venture Partners.  
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | Central Banks Increasingly Accommodative

World markets appeared to be returning to their upward trend in the beginning of February after a volatile start of the year. While concerns about global growth caused by the coronavirus outbreak are...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Long-Term Equity Investors: A Global Perspective

Over the past decade U.S. equities have consistently outperformed international markets, leading many investors to question the role of non-U.S. equities in their portfolio. While the current cycle...
Investment Strategy | Videos

A Global Perspective for Long-Term Equity Investors

Watch this short video on our Global Perspective for Long-Term Equity Investors. Over the past decade U.S. equities have consistently outperformed international markets, leading many investors to...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Commonfund’s First Invitational Diverse Manager Day

On January 16th Commonfund held its first invitational Diverse Manager Day. The day was made possible as a result of the success we had from submissions to the Diverse Manager Portal launched last...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

2020 Investor Survey: Private Markets Sentiment

For the third year in a row, Commonfund Capital conducted a year-end annual survey of institutional investors to gauge their sentiment about private market investments. Survey responses totaled 267...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | Election Year Market Trends

As we enter the 12th year of economic expansion since the Great Financial Crisis, investors continue to wonder whether 2020 will be the year when equity markets finally experience a correction....
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Impact Investing - A Market Matures

Investment strategy influenced by altruistic intentions – broadly, impact investing – has long held sway in a small number of portfolios. Historically, impact investing has failed to gain significant...
Investment Strategy | Videos

Year-End Update and 2020 Investment Outlook

Watch this short video on our Year-End Update and 2020 Investment Outlook. After years of low interest rates, low volatility and rising stock markets, we saw little change in each of these areas in...
Private Capital | Insights Blog

Integrating ESG into Private Equity Portfolios

Many investors today, particularly nonprofits, are seeking to align their investment portfolio with the mission of their organization. Commonfund is a signatory to the PRI and as part of our...
Perspectives | Press Releases

2019 HEPI Report Released

Inflation for U.S. higher education institutions rises 2.5% in fiscal 2019 WILTON, CT, December 23, 2019 – Data from the annual Commonfund Higher Education Price Index (HEPI) show that inflation for...
Perspectives | Press Releases

Three New Members Appointed to Board of Trustees

Commonfund Appoints Three New Members to its Board of Trustees Wilton, CT, December 19, 2019 – Commonfund, a leading asset manager for nonprofit organizations, endowments, foundations and public...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | Jobs Across the Country

The November non-farm payrolls report far exceeded investor expectation and bolstered the perception that the domestic economy continues to grow more than a decade into this recovery. Payrolls were...
Private Capital | Articles

Emerging Markets Private Capital — A Focus on China

Commonfund recently hosted a talk on evolving private capital opportunities in emerging markets. Mark Hoeing, Head of Private Equity, moderated the discussion, while Aaron Miller, Head of Venture...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Purpose: What is an Endowment?

A critically important asset for many nonprofit organizations is their endowment, sometimes referred to by a different name such as long-term investment fund. So important is this pool of financial...
Investment Strategy | Articles

Nonprofit Leaders Spotlight | Dimple Abichandani, Executive Director of the General Service Foundation

Dimple Abichandani is Executive Director of the General Service Foundation (“GSF”), a private grantmaking family foundation that dedicates all its resources to bringing about a more just and...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | Fed Funds Rate Reduction Drives Markets to New Highs

U.S. equities reached an all-time high at the end of October as downside fears abated and risk-on sentiment improved. Among the positives, successful completion of “phase one” of the U.S. – China...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

The Economy and Markets March On

Summary Positive signs on trade drove recent new highs in the U.S. equity markets The Fed continues to be accommodative and employment is strong Growth is slowing but is supported by the consumer,...
Private Capital | Insights Blog

Commonfund Forum Goes Global

During the week of October 14th, 2019 Commonfund Institute hosted our first Forum outside of the United States in Tokyo, Japan. We were honored to be joined by many leading Japanese institutional...
Outsourced CIO | Videos

Your Video Guide to Investment Outsourcing

Watch this short video on investment outsourcing by Keith Luke as he discusses the growth of the outsourced-CIO industry and steps for institutions to take when implementing an outsourced CIO.  
Diversity | Articles

Diversity and Inclusion on Nonprofit Boards is Effective Stewardship

Many institutions recognize the need for diversity and inclusion on their boards and investment committees. Diverse and inclusive boards can make more effective decisions, design and deliver...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Tactical Allocation: Winning Strategy or a Fool’s Game?

Institutional investors overseeing long-term pools of capital typically define their strategic asset allocation with specific targets and bands or ranges around those targets, which allow for...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | Strange Happenings in the Repo Market

An obscure but very large part of the financial markets caused a stir in late September. Lending rates spiked in the repurchase (repo) markets as institutions sought short-term liquidity. The rate...
Private Capital | Insights Blog

Three Ways to Structure Your Private Capital Portfolio

This is the third blog in a private capital series based on our guide, “Succeed in Private Capital Investing”.  You can see the previous blog here. Having determined the size of your private capital...
Governance And Policy | Articles

Outsourcing: Writing Your RFP

Once an institution decides to pursue the outsourced CIO or investment office option, it usually leads to the creation of a request for proposal, or RFP.  Considering that the outsourced model is a...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Announcing the Commonfund Diverse Manager Portal

In the fall of 2018, Commonfund announced the creation of its Diversity and Inclusion Office with the mission to “intentionally promote and foster inclusion and equity across Commonfund and our...
Investment Strategy | Press Releases

Commonfund Launches Diverse Manager Portal

Commonfund Launches Diverse Manager Portal to Broaden Client Access to Diverse Investment Talent Wilton, CT, September 10, 2019 — Commonfund, a prominent asset manager for endowments, foundations and...
Perspectives | Articles

Viewpoint: Actions Speak Louder than Data

In this Council on Foundations-Commonfund Study of Foundations viewpoint, it's about analyzing and interpreting the data we've collected. What do they tell us? What trends are emerging? How are...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | Yield Curve Inversion - Signal or False Positive?

Lately, there has been quite a bit of hand-wringing by the financial media about the yield curve inversion. It seems that many prognosticators believe that an inversion is a clear market signal that...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Looking at Gender Lens Investing

What is Gender Lens Investing? Gender lens investing has garnered significant traction in the last decade. Broadly speaking, gender lens investing aims to achieve financial returns and benefit...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Study of Foundations Key Highlights [Infographic]

For the year ended December 31, 2018, participating private foundations reported an average return of -5.3 percent while participating community foundations reported an average return of -3.5 percent...
Investment Strategy | Articles

An Investor’s Guide to Private Equity Today

Commonfund recently hosted a panel discussion focused on the current state of private equity and venture capital, with an emphasis on the investor’s perspective of the industry today. The three...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Traits of High-performing Boards … and Steps Toward Becoming One

Tom Hyatt is a partner in the Washington. D.C. law firm of Dentons US LLP and an authority on nonprofit governance. This blog is excerpted from a presentation he made recently at the Commonfund...
Perspectives | Press Releases

2018 Council on Foundations-Commonfund Study of Foundations Released

National Foundation Study Reports Negative Investment Returns for 2018; Spending Rates Steady, Donations to Community Foundations Mixed Data from the Council on Foundations-Commonfund Study Generally...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Back to Basics: The ABCs of Governance

Tom Hyatt is a partner in the Washington. D.C. law firm of Dentons US LLP and an authority on nonprofit governance. This blog is excerpted from a presentation he made recently at the Commonfund...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Diverse and Emerging Manager Programs: Worth Doing Well

Michael Rowland is the Commonfund Institute Summer Intern.  He is a rising senior at Case Western Reserve University. He is majoring in Finance and Accounting.  What are Diverse and Emerging Manager...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Recession – Maybe This Time is Different

The July Federal Open Markets Committee (FOMC) meeting signaled the end of central bank rate normalization with the first rate cut in more than a decade. The last time the FOMC cut rates was in...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | Economic Expansions Getting Longer

Following the July FOMC meeting and with investors digesting the first rate cut since 2008 it is important to recognize that the domestic economy is now experiencing the longest period of economic...
Diversity | Insights Blog

Commonfund Hosts Girls Who Invest at NYC Event

Girls Who Invest (GWI) is an organization focused on bringing more women into the field of asset management, a goal that Commonfund strongly supports. Every year, GWI invites rising juniors into...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

The 5 Top Stewardship Imperatives

Christopher K. Merker, PhD, CFA, is a financial advisor and director of Private Asset Management at Robert W. Baird & Co. and an adjunct professor at Marquette University. He is also the co-author of...
Private Capital | Videos

Commonfund Spotlight: Private Equity

Commonfund head of private equity, Mark Hoeing, will discuss views of the private equity market and share research insights into portfolio construction.  
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Higher Education: Philanthropy is an Adjunct, Sensible Public Policy Deserves Tenure

In the last few months, high profile nonprofit institutions have come under intense scrutiny for ethical dilemmas pertaining to the stewardship of resources meant to support mission. This is Part...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | Defensive Stocks at a Premium

The valuation premium (forward price/earnings) of defensive stocks versus cyclicals has climbed steadily over the last seven months. Limited risk appetite, slowing growth, low interest rates and...
Private Capital | Insights Blog

Building a Private Equity Allocation

Building a private capital allocation that makes a difference to your portfolio takes time and dedication. The first step is deciding to make a meaningful allocation to private capital. Then, to...
Private Capital | Press Releases

Commonfund Capital Appoints Head of Beijing Investment Office

Commonfund Capital Appoints Xiaonan Tian as Associate Director and Head of Beijing Investment Office Wilton, CT June 25, 2019 – Commonfund Capital, the private capital subsidiary of Commonfund,...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

The Case for Using the Higher Education Price Index® (HEPI) to Define Inflation for Colleges

When calculating return targets for an endowment portfolio, a conventional piece of the equation is often the Consumer Price Index (CPI). CPI plus 5% is the common short-hand formula for institutions...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Investment Manager Fees Part II: Creating Alignment

In Part I of this blog series, “Investment Manager Fees: Out of Sight, Out of Mind”, we discussed our approach to determining the value of an asset manager and how we might calculate a fair price for...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Nonprofit Hospitals - Big Business in Nonprofit Clothing?

In the last few months, high profile nonprofit institutions have come under intense scrutiny for ethical dilemmas pertaining to the stewardship of resources meant to support mission. This is Part Two...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Summer Reading from the Stewardship Academy Faculty

As the last week of June approaches, investment stewards begin to prepare for summer – a time for relaxing, reflecting, and reading. We asked faculty members from the Investment Stewardship Academy,...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | Conflicting Signals in Stock and Bond Markets

The Bond markets’ expectations of U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed) rate cuts changed drastically last Friday on the news of President Trump’s intention to impose tariffs on Mexico, in an attempt to...
Diversity | Insights Blog

Museums and Cultural Institutions: To Accept or Not to Accept, That Is the Question

In the last few months, high profile nonprofit institutions have come under intense scrutiny for ethical dilemmas pertaining to the stewardship of resources meant to support mission. In a three-part...
Responsible Investing | Insights Blog

Commonfund Forum: A Carbon Neutral Event in 2019

In just two years Commonfund will celebrate its 50th anniversary as a non-profit investment manager for educational endowments, foundations and other tax-exempt investors. Throughout those almost...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Investment Manager Fees: Out of Sight, Out of Mind

One of the most pressing questions facing fiduciaries is that of investment management fees. We think it is a healthy and necessary discussion, as even small fees can have a big impact on performance...
Investment Strategy | Videos

CIO Roundtable: The Past, Present and Future of Endowment Investing

Fiduciaries of nonprofit organizations are entrusted with fulfilling the missions of their organizations in large part through effective stewardship of financial assets. In the 50 years since the...
Risk Management | Insights Blog

Risk Management and Operations: 5 Takeaways from Commonfund Forum 2019

The majority of investors’ attention is often focused on the performance of the funds or managers in their portfolio.  And rightfully so.  The numbers that appear on statements month after month will...
Perspectives | Press Releases

Commonfund Institute Announces First 2019 HEPI Estimate at 2.6%

More frequent forecasts are first of several planned HEPI enhancements Institute will unveil in 2019 Wilton, CT, May 14, 2019 – Commonfund Institute today announced that the first 2019 estimate for...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Taking a Fresh Look at Spending Models

Investors have limited control over the returns their portfolios generate. They have more control over their spending. That doesn’t make it easy. Compared to some earlier periods, volatility in the...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Surprising Stewardship Lessons from the Miracle on the Hudson

“When you’ve suffered a complete loss of engine thrust over the largest city in America, you must act quickly and independently to address the developing situation. But, you must also trust in the...
Outsourced CIO | Insights Blog

5 Key Questions: Comparing Fees of OCIO Providers

The market for Outsourced Chief Investment Officer (“OCIO”) services has boomed over the last decade.  Today, OCIO assets under management are by some estimates nearly $1.5 trillion, 2.5 times the...
Private Capital | Press Releases

Commonfund Capital Closes 2nd Secondaries Fund at $450M

Commitments More than Double Capital Raised for Inaugural Secondaries Fund in 2016 Wilton, CT, May 7, 2019 – Commonfund Capital today announced the closing of its second secondaries fund, Commonfund...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | U.S. Jobs Machine Keeps Cranking

This month we turn our attention to the economy and, specifically, employment. As investors contemplate when this historically long period of economic growth might end, employment trends are one of...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Donor Advised Funds: Changing the Philanthropic Landscape for Higher Education

Donor Advised Funds (DAFs) are the fastest growing giving vehicle in philanthropy. The Council on Foundations defines DAFs as: “A type of charitable giving fund that is established by a donor with an...
Diversity | Articles

Dynamic Workforce = Dynamic Portfolios

The Surprising Outcomes When Diverse Groups and Homogeneous Groups Tackle the Same Problem In late 2018, Commonfund established a Diversity Office with the objective of benefiting from the strengths...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

A sit-down with Richard Fisher

As a follow-on to the Commonfund Forum 2019 panel discussion, The Global Economy and the Return of Risk, Richard Fisher, former President and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas,  further...
Market Commentary | Articles

The Global Economy and the Return of Risk

How to think about tariffs, deficits, valuations, leverage, growth and other issues What signals should institutions be mindful of as they make portfolio decisions in the current environment? A panel...
Private Capital | Insights Blog

Private Market Investing vs Public Market Investing, What’s the Big Difference?

The first step of successful private market investing is to learn what private capital is, what its risks and rewards are, and how it differs from public market investing. Private capital provides...
Perspectives | Press Releases

Majority of Investors Expect Bull Market to End

Nonprofit Investors Anticipate Weakening Consumer Confidence to Cause End of Bull Market, Commonfund Survey Finds Majority of Endowments, Foundations Expect Bull Market to End Within 2 Years Wilton,...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Commonfund Forum 2019 Attendee Statistics [Infographic]

Commonfund recently hosted its 21st annual Commonfund Forum in Orlando, Florida. The event brought together institutional investors to engage in a two-day conference to explore cyclical trends and...
Investment Strategy | Videos

Playing to Win

In this Forum 2019 general session, Commonfund experts share research into much of the conventional wisdom around institutional portfolio management, with some surprising results into which...
Market Commentary | Videos

Welcome Address and Overview | Forum 2019

Mark Anson, Commonfund Chief Executive Officer and CIO opens Forum 2019 with welcome remarks and a review of the global economy. Download the slides in this presentation.   
Perspectives | Articles

Viewpoint: Looking Back, Moving Forward - A Decade of Insight from CSIS

Fiscal 2009 was an epochal year. In March, the stock market decline wrought by the financial crisis and Great Recession reached its nadir as investors sensed the worst had passed. With the turn in...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Study of Independent Schools Key Findings [Infographic]

Schools participating in the Commonfund Benchmarks Study® of Independent Schools (CSIS) for the 2018 fiscal year reported an average return (net of fees) on their endowment assets of 7.4 percent. The...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

The Fallacy of Manager Diversification – How “Horse Races” Can Increase, Not Reduce Risk

On the surface, hiring two (or more) multi-asset managers to manage an entire portfolio may seem like a good idea. Intuitively, it would seem to reduce manager concentration risk, and provide...
Perspectives | Press Releases

2018 Commonfund Benchmarks Study® of Independent Schools (CSIS) Released

Commonfund Study of Independent Schools Reports 7.4% Return on Endowment Assets for FY2018 Investment Result Is Lower Compared to Previous Year, but Long-Term Returns Generally Improve WILTON, CT,...
Governance And Policy | Reports And Surveys

Commonfund Benchmarks Study - Independent Schools

The Commonfund Benchmarks Study® of Independent Schools. Commonfund conducts the annual study of independent school endowment management practices and policies in conjunction with the National...
Market Commentary | Insights Blog

Chart of the Month | One Reason Investors Are Feeling Uneasy

Investors of all types, including those that represent institutions, are clearly feeling more uneasy than they have in years. It isn’t just the spike in stock market volatility that buffeted...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Getting Started in Responsible Investing

The biggest challenge in implementing any type of responsible investment program is in clearly defining and prioritizing those issues most relevant to an organization. Although it may seem a...
Private Capital | Insights Blog

5 Steps to Success in Private Capital Investing

Investors participate in private capital markets for two main reasons: to pursue increased investment return and to add portfolio diversification. Even well-informed investors who are experienced in...
Private Capital | White Papers

Succeed in Private Capital Investing - A Commonfund Guide

This Commonfund brochure, Succeed in Private Capital Investing, provides the key steps to building and maintaining a well-structured private capital portfolio.
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Stormy Markets, Steady Institutional Investors

This blog is reprinted with permission by Net Assets, published by the National Business Officers Association (NBOA).  The original article can be found here. Investment guidelines enable...
Market Commentary | Articles

Year-End Update and 2019 Investment Outlook

As we bid farewell to 2018 and head into 2019, I am pleased to provide you with an update on developments at Commonfund as well as our perspective on the markets and investing. Our roots as a...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

What’s in the Data? HEPI 2018 Highlights

Commonfund Higher Education Price Index (HEPI) data show that inflation for colleges and universities was 2.8 percent for fiscal year 2018, a decline from last year’s 3.3 percent but higher than the...
Responsible Investing | Insights Blog

Identifying an “E” Factor

Over the past year the Commonfund investment teams have undertaken research to identify and isolate a new factor associated with the environmental sustainability of a stock (or a portfolio of...
Perspectives | Press Releases

2018 HEPI Report Released

Inflation for U.S. Higher Education Institutions Rises 2.8% in Fiscal 2018 WILTON, CT, December 10, 2018 – Data from the annual Commonfund Higher Education Price Index (HEPI) show that inflation for...
Responsible Investing | Insights Blog

Applying the Endowment Model to Diversity and Inclusion

Commonfund recently launched a Diversity Office, a formal, cross departmental effort focused on diversity and inclusion. The mission of the Commonfund Diversity Office is to intentionally promote and...
Private Capital | Press Releases

Commonfund Appoints Managing Director for Consultant Relations

Wilton, CT, November 28, 2018 – Commonfund Capital, the private capital subsidiary of Commonfund, announced today that its investment team has expanded with the appointment of Jay Teevan as Managing...
Investment Strategy | Videos

Investment Strategies for Long-Term Investors

Kris Kwait, Deputy CIO and Head of Investments, discusses investment strategies for long-term investors in the current market environment.  
Diversity | Press Releases

Commonfund Launches Diversity Office

Wilton, CT, November 15, 2018 – Commonfund, a prominent asset manager for endowments, foundations and public pension investors, announced today the launch of its Diversity Office (“The Office”). By...
Governance And Policy | Videos

Commonfund Partner Spotlight | Widener University

Commonfund Managing Director and Head of Strategic Solutions, Tim Yates, interviews Dr. Julie Wollman, President of Widener University. In this wide-ranging discussion Dr. Wollman describes how...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

A Cost-Effective Approach to Hedge Fund Allocations: Part 2

Let’s start with a quick recap of Part 1 of this story, which can be boiled down to three main points:  Investors often spend too much for market beta, paying “2 and 20” for hedge funds that deliver...
Private Capital | Press Releases

Commonfund Capital Closes 12th Venture Capital Fund at $432M

Commonfund Capital Closes 12th Venture Capital Fund at $432M Wilton, CT, October 5, 2018 – Commonfund Capital today announced the closing of its 12th venture capital fund, Commonfund Capital Venture...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

A Cost-Effective Approach to Hedge Fund Allocations: Part 1

At the risk of beating a dead horse, hedge funds are not an asset class.  This is especially true in the way in which Commonfund selects and constructs its hedge fund portfolios: focusing...
Governance And Policy | White Papers

Is Your Institution Ready?

At Commonfund, we are having important discussions with clients on their preparedness for the next financial crisis. For example, we are working with clients to develop a road map, or “crisis...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Are You Ready for the Next Crisis?

Ten years ago Lehman Brothers failed, representing the largest bankruptcy in history, and accelerating a global financial crisis that would knock many non-profit portfolios backward. This came on the...
Governance And Policy | Articles

Viewpoint: The Long of It

Endowments, like the organizations they support, are generally intended to operate in perpetuity. To accomplish this goal, those responsible for endowments—trustees or directors—make decisions based...
Private Capital | Videos

The Evolution of the Private Equity Secondaries Market

Cari Lodge, head of secondaries at Commonfund Capital, discusses the development of the secondaries market for private equity and opportunities that it offers investors. The Evolution of Private...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

7 Major Findings - Commonfund Benchmarks Study of Healthcare Organizations

Fifty-six healthcare organizations participated in the 2016–2017 Commonfund Benchmarks Study® of Healthcare Organizations. These organizations reported an average investable asset pool of $2.1...
Perspectives | Press Releases

2017 CSHO Study of Healthcare Organizations Released

Organizations Participating in Commonfund Benchmarks Study® of Nonprofit Healthcare Organizations Report Mixed Long-Term Results 13.2% Investment Return for 2017 Is Highest for Healthcare...
Governance And Policy | Articles

Viewpoint: The Gift of (Relative) Calm

The calamities known as the financial crisis and Great Recession are now a decade in the past. But far from fading into history, the memories remain fresh. And we are reminded of those days regularly...
Responsible Investing | Insights Blog

Viewpoint: Responsible Investing - Read All About It

The new and newsworthy in this year’s Council on Foundations–Commonfund Study of Investment of Endowments for Private and Community Foundations® (CCSF) is headlined by responsible investing. No other...
Perspectives | Press Releases

2017 CCSF Study of Foundations Released

National Foundation Study Shows Investment Returns Rose in 2017; Spending Rates Mixed, Gift-Giving Increased for Community Foundations Data from the Council on Foundations-Commonfund Study (CCSF)...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Five Questions to Ask Your Advisor: Costs of Portfolio Management

Costs matter. With expectations for lower market returns over the coming years, every basis point of net performance is particularly important. Furthermore, the compounding effect of high fees can...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

The Four P’s of Investment Decisions: Lessons from the Commonfund Institute

Three days after becoming Executive Director of the Commonfund Institute, I found myself at Yale University in New Haven giving welcoming remarks at our annual educational program.  Although I will...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Equity Portfolio Construction – Through a Risk Factor Lens

At Commonfund, we aim to build multi-manager, active risk equity portfolios with a clear objective of consistent outperformance versus passive policy benchmarks. Our approach is to take intentional...
Governance And Policy | White Papers

Legislating the Normative Environment

Regulation of nonprofit investment and governance practices has migrated from traditional common-law principles to codified statutory law, affecting areas of nonprofit governance not addressed in the...
Investment Strategy | Reports And Surveys

Hedge Funds - An Instructional Look

Hedge funds often account for the largest share of institutions’ allocation to alternative investment strategies yet, hedge fund strategies can be difficult to understand. We have created a reference...
Investment Strategy | White Papers

Endowment Spending - A look Back

Market volatility has severely tested many nonprofit institutions, causing them to revisit their endowment spending practices.
Investment Strategy | White Papers

Chasing Winners

For investors selecting managers to hire, the draw of managers that have produced outsized recent winners can be powerful. While such a strategy can work in the long-term, this strategy is implicitly...
Responsible Investing | Insights Blog

What are the Differences Between SRI and ESG?

The Challenges of Terminology There are a great many terms referring in some way to practices related to responsible investing: socially responsible investing; mission-related investing; impact...
Investment Strategy | White Papers

Essential Not Optional: A Strategic Approach to Fundraising for Endowments

Fundraising for endowments has become an essential strategic capability that endowed institutions will have to build or acquire in order to thrive.
Investment Strategy | White Papers

Assessing your Board's Risk Tolerance

To provide a deeper understanding of what board and investment committee members can do to improve their ability to assess risk tolerance, Commonfund has prepared a white paper discussing lessons...
Governance And Policy | White Papers

Building and Maintaining an Excellent Board

How well a board functions determines the fortunes of the organization it governs. Mediocre performance may enable an organization to survive, while weak or dysfunctional boards may jeopardize their...
Investment Strategy | White Papers

Sample Operating Asset Policy and Guidelines

Commonfund has developed a sample Operating Asset Investment Policy based on best practices in cash investment management. Download your copy today.
Perspectives | Press Releases

Commonfund Leadership Changes

Commonfund Appoints Mark Anson Chief Executive Officer Deborah Spalding and Kristofer Kwait appointed Deputy CIOs  Wilton, CT, June 7, 2018 – Commonfund, an asset manager for endowments, foundations...
Investor Spotlight | Articles

Rust College

Rust College: Where tomorrow’s leaders are students today In the wake of the Civil War, Rust College was founded in 1866 to provide an education for newly-freed slaves. Located in Holly Springs,...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Bonds: Unwanted and Unloved but not Unnecessary

Well, the party may finally be over. Like the college dean who shuts down the campus party, the Fed has finally taken away the interest rate punch bowl that investors have enjoyed for so long. It may...
Investment Strategy | White Papers

The Curious Case of Risk Exposures

In this Commonfund whitepaper, we take a deeper look at portfolio risk exposures in diversified, multi-asset class portfolios, using the typical endowment portfolio as the paradigm.
Governance And Policy | White Papers

Assessing the State of Healthcare

Nonprofit healthcare organizations are confronting a series of challenges as they strive to maintain positive operating margins in the face of declining reimbursement from insurance companies and...
Investment Strategy | White Papers

Fiduciary Duty & Environmental Responsibility: Crafting A Low Carbon Response

Recent decades and climate change have introduced a new level of complexity to the fiduciary responsibilities of boards of trustees and investment committees, inviting them to examine responsible...
Investment Strategy | Articles

Diversity and Emerging Managers

The benefits of diversity are widely recognized in the work place and among educational institutions and other nonprofits. Yet, the concept of investment management firms that are minority owned and...
Governance And Policy | Reports And Surveys

Commonfund Benchmarks Study - Healthcare Report

The Commonfund Benchmarks Study® – Healthcare Organizations Report provides an analysis of the investment and governance policies and practices of nonprofit healthcare organizations across the U.S.
Investment Strategy | Articles

Inflation is Expected to Rise. How Can Investors Protect Portfolios?

In March, capital markets entered their tenth year of post-crisis recovery. For diversified portfolios, these have been some of the most profitable times, characterized by strong returns, positive...
Governance And Policy | Reports And Surveys

COF - Commonfund Study of Foundations

The Council on Foundation - Commonfund (CCSF) Study provides an authoritative and comprehensive survey of private and community foundation investment and governance practices.
Investment Strategy | Reports And Surveys

Study of Responsible Investing for Foundations

The Council on Foundations - Commonfund Study of Responsible Investing for Foundations analyzes the investment management and governance practices of U.S. foundations, both private and public. Data...
Investment Strategy | Reports And Surveys

Study of Responsible Investing for Endowments

Commonfund Study of Responsible Investing for Endowments analyzes the investment management and governance practices of U.S. endowments and their affiliated foundations. Data is excerpted from the...
Responsible Investing | Articles

ESG Investing Becomes Mainstream

The subject of ESG, or investing in accord with environmental, social and governance principles, arose in several sessions at Commonfund Forum 2018. One session, in particular, was devoted to the...
Outsourced Cio | White Papers

Commonfund's Guide to Outsourcing

With limited time during the year, maximizing effectiveness is key for your committee. Many nonprofit investors are pursuing outsourcing their CIO to a fiduciary partner who can dedicate the...
Investment Strategy | White Papers

Cost of Investment Management - Commonfund Whitepaper

Few aspects of financial management are more important for fiduciaries than an understanding of the cost if investment management of the perpetual funds for which they have responsibility. Our aim is...
Responsible Investing | White Papers

From SRI to ESG: The Changing World of Responsible Investing

Investment professionals debate whether a portfolio’s long-term performance can be enhanced by including environmental, social and governance (ESG) considerations in the security selection process.
Private Capital | Articles

Private Capital: Key to Unlocking Growth in Emerging Markets

After a turbulent period, emerging markets have delivered double-digit returns in recent years. Private investments in emerging markets offer a way to diversify beyond the public markets and, in...
Investor Spotlight | Articles

Flagler College

Energetic youth in ‘America’s oldest city’. St. Augustine is the oldest continuously occupied European-established settlement in the continental U.S., having been founded in 1565. Flagler College is...
Investor Spotlight | Articles

Missouri Baptist Foundation

Managing investments for missions, ministries and churches. The Missouri Baptist Foundation (MBF) has a noble calling: to support and strengthen the good work of the show me state's ministries,...
Investor Spotlight | Articles

University of the Virgin Islands

  These Buccaneers pursue a different treasure. There was a time when pirates plied the waters of the Caribbean in the pursuit of gold and other treasure. The Buccaneers mascot of the University of...
Investor Spotlight | Articles

University Corporation for Atmospheric Research

The Sky's No Limit. It doesn't issue public weather forecasts, but it tracks weather around the globe. It isn't the national hurricane center, but it studies hurricanes as well as other extreme...
Investor Spotlight | Articles

They dig plants at the Botanical Research Institute of Texas

Hundreds of thousands of plant species are scattered all over the earth, but if the plant world had a headquarters it might be the Fort Worth, Texas home of the Botanical Research Institute of Texas...
Investor Spotlight | Articles

The Lincoln University

Founded in 1854, The Lincoln University is the nation's oldest degree-granting institutions for persons of African descent. Lincoln is committed to maintaining a nurturing and stimulating environment...
Investor Spotlight | Articles

Western Washington University

Active minds changing lives. Right-sized, well balanced, with an extensive range of strong academic programs and some enlightening stats that speak to all of it: Western Washington University (WWU)...
Perspectives | Press Releases

Survey Finds Investors Remain Cautiously Optimistic

Nonprofit Investors Believe Trade Wars and Protectionism Pose Greatest Threat to the Global Economy, Finds Commonfund Survey Endowments, Foundations Remain Cautiously Optimistic on Achieving...
Investment Strategy | Videos

Commonfund Manager Spotlight | Brightwood Capital Advisors

Commonfund's Caroline Greer interviews Sengal Selassie, Co-CEO and Co-Founder of Brightwood Capital Advisors in this Commonfund Manager Spotlight.  
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Real Estate Credit Environment: Risk Off - Risk On

Earlier last year real estate markets received a scare as CMBS spreads widened, particularly in lower rated and more junior tranches.  Additionally, one of the most respected U.S. real estate...
Investment Strategy | White Papers

Striking the Balance: A Fiduciary Approach to Risk and Investment Policy

Striking the Balance: A Fiduciary Approach to Risk and Investment Policy is a Commonfund whitepaper for institutional investors.
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Investing in Diversity

At Commonfund, we scour the globe to find investment managers that we believe have the ability to consistently produce excess returns (alpha) over and beyond their benchmark. But alpha alone is not...
Diversity | Insights Blog

10 Key Takeaways from Commonfund Forum 2018

Commonfund recently hosted its 20th annual Commonfund Forum in Orlando, Florida. The event brought together 400 institutional investors from the U.S., Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Canada, Chile...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Forum 2018 Attendee Statistics [Infographic]

We recently hosted our 20th annual Commonfund Forum in Orlando Florida. The event brought together institutional investors to engage in a two-day conference to explore cyclical trends and tactical...
Investment Strategy | Videos

Evolving Asset Allocation and Policy Portfolios

In this Forum 2018 general session, Commonfund experts share research findings and techniques we employ to help investors understand not just the characteristics of their portfolio in isolation but...
Private Capital | Insights Blog

Top Five Private Capital Investor Concerns

At the end of the year we sent out a short survey to learn more about investors’ headline concerns about the private capital markets today. Investors also shared their expectations about returns and...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Key Findings from 2017 NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments [Infographic]

For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017, educational endowments reported a 12.2 percent return as the 10-Year return fell to 4.6 percent. In this infographic, we report the top findings from the 2017...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Baring Their Teeth – FAANGs Take a Bite Out of the Equity Market

Narrow market leadership in the U.S. and Emerging Markets proves challenging for active managers Narrow markets are not uncommon to equity investors. They tend to manifest themselves during the best...
Governance And Policy | Articles

Viewpoint: Being Objective

Every year, the NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments® (NCSE) reports new data—on investment returns, asset allocation, risk management, donations and gifts, and much more. But some data points are...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

A Gap In Reality

With the release of the annual NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments (NCSE) comes the obligatory comparison of 1-year returns. “How did we do relative to the 12.2 percent average return” is a...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Despite Strong FY2017, Endowments Report Decline in Ten-Year Return

Despite 12.2 percent return for FY2017, educational endowments report a decline in their 10-Year return while large institutions lead increase in effective spending rate Data gathered from 809 U.S....
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

When Leaks Turn into Floods: Challenges Facing Higher Education

2017’s tax legislation is the latest in a growing list of challenges facing higher education. The new excise taxes on endowment earnings of the largest private universities, coupled with the...
Governance And Policy | Articles

Governance Best Practices: How Does Your Board Measure Up?

Since our founding in 1971, a core element of the Commonfund mission has been to provide insights on a broad range of governance, policy and investment challenges. An engaged governing board is...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Bonds May Not Be Loved, But They Shouldn't Be Forgotten

Summary TODAY, THERE IS A GOOD DEAL OF HAND WRINGING OVER THE RISK OF RISING RATES. WHILE RISING LONG-TERM RATES COULD BE A HEADWIND FOR CORE FIXED INCOME, AS LONG AS RATES RISE FAIRLY MODESTLY THE...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Tax Reform: CPI Plus More

It was another taxing weekend (literally) at Commonfund as we digested 1,097 pages of the conference agreement for the tax reform bill (the “Tax Act”) and its implications for our country and for the...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

The Tax Man Cometh (And Not Just for the Ivies)

UPDATE: Since this blog was published there have been further developments related to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.  Please see our post Tax Cuts and Jobs Act: CPI Plus More for our latest thinking....
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Spending Policy: Is Yours Ready for the Next Downturn?

In most Investment Policy Statements there is often a reference to two important, but conflicting, objectives: one, to preserve the purchasing power of the long-term portfolio in real terms, and two,...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Emerging Market Equities Turn the Corner

As we progress through calendar year 2017, we have witnessed the continuation of the equity bull market started in 2009. One difference however, is that leadership has turned (finally!) to non-U.S...
Private Capital | Articles

What’s the Difference? Time-Weighted Return vs. Internal Rate of Return

Investors often ask about the difference between time-weighted return (“TWR”) and internal rate of return (“IRR”). In general, TWR is used by the investment industry to measure the performance of...
Investment Strategy | White Papers

The Investment Policy Statement - A Commonfund Whitepaper

Successful investing for long-term funds requires a strategic plan. The plan must be specific, yet it also needs to be sufficiently flexible.
Investment Strategy | White Papers

Sample Investment Policy Rider for Responsible Investing

A number of clients and prospects have asked how their Investment Policy Statement (IPS) can be amended to accommodate responsible investing strategies.
Investor Spotlight | Articles

Northampton Community College Foundation

The dictionary defines a foundation as “an underlying base or support.” Of course, there’s another type of foundation, defined as “funds given for the support of an institution.” Northampton...
Investment Strategy | Reports And Surveys

Commonfund Higher Education Price Index (HEPI)

The annual Commonfund Higher Education Price Index (HEPI) report provides an analysis of HEPI and the cost factors associated with the index.
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

On Complacency | Why Risk Management Always Matters

Like nearly everything in the financial markets, risk is cyclical.  History repeats itself.  The echoes of past crises are always heard in present ones, yet new crises are rarely predicted and not...
Outsourced CIO | Insights Blog

A Primer on Outsourced Investment Management

Once seen primarily as a solution for small institutions with limited resources, outsourcing of the investment management function is now widespread, with a broad range of long-term investors –...
Outsourced Cio | White Papers

Outsourced Investment Management: An Overview for Decision Makers

An institution’s decision to work with an OCIO provider will likely depend on several factors. Learn more on on Outsourced Investment Management by...
Investment Strategy | Articles

Hedge Fund Land: An Expensive Amusement Park?

In a series of articles, we have addressed two recent investment “fatigues” experienced by institutional investors: Active vs. Passive; and Global (ACWI) vs. US benchmarks.  In this article, we...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Key Findings from 2016 Council on Foundations-Commonfund Study of Foundations [Infographic]

For the fiscal year ended December 30, 2016, participating private foundations reported an average return of 6.4 percent while participating community foundations reported an average return of 7.3...
Responsible Investing | Articles

Viewpoint: Increased Responsibility

Introduction In recent years, growing attention has been paid to the use by endowed institutions of so-called responsible investing practices. The three main practices — environmental, social and...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

How Much Beta is in Your Equity Portfolio?

Leveling the Field in the “Tug of War” Between Active and Passive… Active Equity Manager Universal Objective: Outperform the Passive Alternative It’s undeniable that every active equity manager’s...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Making the Case for Natural Resources Investing

The natural resources sector is often characterized as cyclical, as producers and service providers experience underlying exposure to and commensurate volatility of commodities in the oil and gas,...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Thoughts on the Role of Credit in Institutional Portfolios

While most institutional portfolios have allocations to investment grade corporate credit, as a strategic allocation high yield and emerging market credit (liquid credit) are sometimes overlooked....
Risk Management | Insights Blog

WannaCry? WannaRun, WannaHide! Managing Cybersecurity Risk

Over the last year there has been no shortage of things to keep investors, asset managers, and risk managers concerned. Despite these exogenous shocks most equity markets have continued to shake off...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Flexing Your Global Portfolio Can Lead to ACWI Fatigue, but Don't Throw in the Towel Yet

Like the build-up of lactic acid in your muscles after a strenuous workout, the underperformance of Morgan Stanley Capital International All Country World index (MSCI ACWI) vs. the Standard & Poor’s...
Governance And Policy | Articles

Not So Free: Implications of New York’s Excelsior Scholarships

Key Insights While opening opportunity to many New York families, the recently enacted Excelsior Scholarship Program will likely stress the financial resources of small private colleges and...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Active Fee Management: Notes from the Front Lines

Few topics get investors’ attention as much as fees.  We wouldn’t be human if we all didn’t want to know, in detail, how much something costs.  In the world of investing, fees are an even more...
Investment Strategy | Articles

The Misperception of Illiquid Investments

With many market participants expecting low nominal returns across traditional asset classes in the coming years, the challenge of structuring a portfolio to achieve CPI +5%, or long-term purchasing...
Perspectives | Videos

The Absent Superpower

In this Commonfund Forum 2017 Spotlight, geopolitical strategist and author Peter Zeihan examines how the hard rules of geography are eroding the American commitment to free trade; how much of the...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Maintaining Purchasing Power in Today’s Environment | CPI + 5%

At Commonfund, we understand the challenge institutions face of maintaining the purchasing power of their endowment. In fact, achieving a rate of return sufficient to cover inflation, distributions...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Key Findings from NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments [Infographic]

For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2016, educational endowments reported a -1.9 percent return as the 10-Year return fell to 5.0 percent. In this infographic, we report the top findings from the 2016...
Investment Strategy | Articles

CIO Roundtable: Is the Endowment Model a Crowded Trade?

Stuck in the past or ever-evolving? The endowment model gets a hard look eight years into the current market cycle. With core tenets of the endowment model seemingly under stress for the last several...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

The Crowded Liquidity Trade

The liquidity markets have experienced one of the largest disruptions since the inception of SEC Rule 2a-71 in the early 1970’s.  Over the past few months, we have seen a massive shift of investor...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Commonfund Forum 2017 Attendee Statistics [Infographic]

We recently hosted our 19th annual Commonfund Forum in San Antonio Texas. The event brought together institutional investors to engage in a three-day conference to explore cyclical trends and...
Perspectives | Articles

Viewpoint: Counting the Cost

How much does investment management cost? Fiduciaries, donors and stakeholders at endowed institutions have a strong interest in finding a good answer to this question, particularly in this era of...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

10 Key Takeaways from Commonfund Forum 2017

Commonfund recently hosted its 19th annual Commonfund Forum in San Antonio Texas.  The event brought together about 450 institutional investors from the U.S, Puerto Rico and Canada to engage in a...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Long-Term Trends for Long-Term Investors

Nonprofit institutions have the distinct advantage of having the longest time horizon of any investors – often perpetuity.  This affords an opportunity to consider investments based on secular trends...
Perspectives | Videos

No More Gatekeepers

In this Commonfund Forum Spotlight, founder of DonorsChoose.org Charles Best shares how as a 24-year-old teacher at a Bronx high school, he created a model of giving hailed as "the future of...
Perspectives | Videos

Monkeynomics

In this Commonfund Forum 2017 Spotlight, Dr. Laurie Santos demonstrates that primates have much to teach us about our own economic decision-making. Both monkeys and humans know a bargain when they...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

What do the Cable Television and Hedge Fund Industries Have in Common?

These industries may seem an odd pairing, but both are in the midst of a disruption-led, industry-wide rationalization process. The two industries share in common a historically evolved “bundling”...
Perspectives | Insights Blog

Constraints Faced by Healthcare Endowments

As a result of the evolving landscape of the healthcare industry, organizations are increasingly being shaped by pressures affecting both the revenue and expense sides of the income statement. On one...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Private Credit Opportunities – Direct Lending to U.S. Middle Market Companies

Much has been made of the challenges endowment, foundation and nonprofit investors face in achieving a CPI+ five percent return target. One way to improve the probability of attaining this goal is to...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Does Your Investment Policy Statement Account for Risk?

Successful investing for long-term funds requires a strategic plan. This is true despite – indeed, because of – the fact that the future is unknowable. The plan must be specific, embodying in...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Healthcare Endowment Management: 3 Questions to Consider

Mounting cost pressures are forcing small and mid-sized nonprofit healthcare organizations to consider adopting endowment management practices similar to those used elsewhere in the nonprofit sector....
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Drafting Your Investment Policy Statement: 10 Critical Issues

Endowed institutions differ in their missions, capabilities and resources, and investment policy statements naturally mirror these differences.  In that sense, there is no single ‘right’ investment...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Venture Capital - Looking Forward and Upward

Beginning in the second half of 2015, there was growing caution that started to impact pricing and investment activity in early 2016. This valuation cooling period and subsequent shift in mindset...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

A False Sense of Diversification?

As we have undergone the process of re-underwriting all of Commonfund’s equity managers and funds over the last 6 months, we have tackled anew the age old question of how many funds does one...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

How Does Board Structure Affect Performance?

The structure of a board has an important influence on its effectiveness, and being cognizant of these matters is essential to improving a board’s performance. In this article, we’ll discuss four...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Real Estate – Rates, Rates, Rates

“There are three things that matter in property: location, location, location”. While the age-old adage still holds in many respects, real estate risks, as with the risks associated with all asset...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Fiduciary Responsibility: A Board’s Purpose and Roles

Excellent boards are made, not born. Achieving excellence in board governance requires success in four crucial areas: capable leadership, a sound organizational structure, attention to fiduciary...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Where Did Our Operating Income Go?

Treasury managers face a new challenge to an old problem. Their institutions historically have relied on operating investment income to provide a necessary influx to operating budgets. Prior to 2008,...
Investor Spotlight | Articles

Center for Natural Lands Management

These words—to protect, preserve and defend—come from the oath of office sworn by the President of the United States. At the Center for Natural Lands Management (CNLM), they refer to an unwritten but...
Governance And Policy | Articles

Viewpoint: A Firmer Foundation

How long is the long term? A year ago, private and community foundations appeared to many observers to have recovered from the losses suffered in the 2008–09 global financial crisis. Double-digit...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

It's Not Easy Being Active

It’s not easy being an active equity manager these days. As the chart below depicts, active managers have just come through the worst period for returns in several decades. The chart shows the...
Outsourced CIO | Insights Blog

The Billion Dollar Dilemma - What is the Right Governance Model for your Institution?

Finding the right investment governance model for your institution isn’t about size. In the hyper-competitive world of endowment management, something curious happens when the word used to describe...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Five Laws that Led to Uniformity in Nonprofit Governance

With each state having its own court system, uniformity among the states did not exist. While there was agreement on basic common-law trust principles, variations still emerged. As the American...
Responsible Investing | Insights Blog

Better Understanding Responsible Investing Practices

How can you do the most good, with limited resources, when facing enormous problems? That question lies at or near the heart of every decision at a foundation. This is true of the grant dollars which...
Investor Spotlight | Articles

The William Penn Foundation

Fast Philly facts: The city is the site of the first library, hospital, medical school, stock exchange and zoo in the U.S. It’s the only World Heritage City in the U.S. William Penn founded the city...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

A Framework for Nonprofit Governance

Two important laws enacted in the last 15 years have had an impact far beyond the intent of their original authors, causing major, if little-noticed, changes in nonprofit governance. The...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Integration of ESG Factors in Practical Steps

In the current climate of slow global economic growth and resource constraints at many institutions, integration of ESG considerations in an organization’s investment portfolio may be perceived as a...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Bridging the Gap: Carbon and Fiduciary Responsibility

Most institutional investor discussions and actions regarding global warming have been at two ends of the spectrum: either divest from fossil fuels entirely or remain fully invested. A better...
Investment Strategy | Articles

Active Management Fatigue and What to Do About It

Active management has struggled for several years, raising questions about whether active management can ever outperform again. Traditional active manager style tilts, like value and size, have...
Responsible Investing | Insights Blog

Responsible Investing for Foundations

Commonfund and the Council on Foundations are thrilled to announce the release of the 2016 Council on Foundations – Commonfund Study of Responsible Investing. It is the largest and most detailed...
Outsourced CIO | Insights Blog

Top Ten Risks for Practicing CIOs

A Chief Investment Officer’s primary responsibility is to identify and clearly communicate his/her portfolio’s risks to his/her Board, Investment Committee and/or client(s).  About eighteen months...
| Articles

What’s Next for Cash Investors?

In the static low-rate environment of recent years, it seemed as though there was no “what’s next” for cash. Today, that has changed, as there are major forces reshaping the regulatory and interest...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Common Concerns about Responsible Investing

Discussions about whether responsible investing strategies help or hurt investment performance are complicated by the fact that, there are several broad categories of responsible investing practice...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Operating Charity Implements a Risk-Based Investment Policy

An operating charity in the Northeast is in the process of implementing a risk-based investment policy for its $30 million endowment. The organization’s seven-member Investment Committee includes...
Outsourced CIO | Insights Blog

Deciding on an OCIO Provider: Three Factors to Consider

There are three main factors an institution will need to weigh in deciding if working with an OCIO provider is right for them. Those are: Degree of Discretion: What role do the institution’s board...
Investment Strategy | Articles

Ideas for Next Gen Energy Investing

Advances in alternative energy technologies promise to reduce the world’s dependence on fossil fuels. Largely, however, they remain just that—a promise. So, where are the opportunities to invest in...
Responsible Investing | Insights Blog

Responsible Investing: Terminology and Background

The terms socially-responsible investing (SRI), mission-related investing, impact investing and environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing – all frequently grouped under the heading of...
Investment Strategy | Articles

Unhedged Commentary: The $3 Trillion Question

Reprinted from Institutional Investor’s Alpha Spring 2016 issue The growth of the hedge fund industry over the past decade has been tremendous, with more and more institutional and retail investors...
Governance And Policy | Articles

The Big Picture: Integrating Investments, Finance and Development

Most things function a lot better when all the moving parts work together—nonprofit institutions included. The synergies afforded by collaboration across organizational boundaries may be the most...
Investment Strategy | Articles

Asset Allocation with Private Equity

Reprinted from Volume 17, Number 1, 2016 of The Journal of Investment Consulting by Mark J.P. Anson Private assets such as private equity and venture capital have long been a thorn in the side of...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

What is an OCIO?

Outsourced investment management, once primarily a solution for small institutions with limited resources, is now used by a broad range of long-term investors. When properly implemented, outsourcing...
Investment Strategy | Articles

Emerging Markets: Balancing Risk and Reward

Investors poured $2 trillion into emerging economies between 2009 and 2014. Then prices for a basket of commodities fell—dragging crude oil down to levels not seen in a decade and dashing investors’...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Hedge Funds: How Many (or Few) Does it Take?

It’s straightforward to get an answer to that question, at least superficially: draw at random from a manager universe, build hypothetical portfolios with the selected managers, track performance,...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Is Currency an Asset Class?

Currency risk can best be described as the surprise impact that currency exposure has on an investment portfolio. Although currency risk typically confounds investors, it is easy to measure – it is...
Investment Strategy | Articles

Rethinking Risk and Diversification

Asset allocation is still the foundation on which better risk-adjusted returns are built. But asset allocation has changed, along with all the associated tools for pursuing return and managing risk....
Perspectives | Videos

The One World Schoolhouse: Education Reimagined

Sal Khan is the founder of the Khan Academy, a nonprofit with the mission of providing free, high-quality education to “anyone, anywhere” in the world. A former hedge fund analyst with degrees from...
Perspectives | Articles

Viewpoint: Seven Years On

How long is the long term? A year ago, endowments appeared to many observers to have recovered from the losses suffered in the 2008-09 global financial crisis. Double-digit investment returns had...
Responsible Investing | Insights Blog

Sample Investment Policy Statement Rider for Responsible Investing

A number of clients and prospects have asked how their Investment Policy Statement (IPS) can be amended to accommodate responsible investing strategies. In response, we have prepared a rider which...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Six Key Questions To Ask OCIO Providers

“Outsourced CIO” (or OCIO) is a term that might not be familiar to many. In the past it has been defined as a traditional consulting model in which the process of interviewing potential investment...
Governance And Policy | Articles

Top Five Questions of Nonprofit Fiduciaries

The turbulent start to the New Year has led governing boards, investment committees and staff to question what’s next for the markets and what they should do about it.  Below are the top five...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

New Environmental Regulations and the Impact on Fiduciaries

Developments in world financial markets seem to occur more quickly every year, requiring ever-higher levels of expertise and experience on the part of investment committees. Climate change is a more...
Investment Strategy | Insights Blog

Size: It's Complicated

Assets under management (AUM) among hedge funds has always been characteristically top-heavy, with the majority of capital in the hands of a relatively small number of managers. While the hedge fund...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Calculating Investment Management Costs

The following methodology may be of use in helping you to understand more fully what your organization pays for investment management costs. Identify the fees you pay at the overall portfolio level...
Risk Management | Insights Blog

The Curious Case of Risk Exposures in Diversified Portfolios

Our research at Commonfund has found that a 70/30 stock/bond portfolio  has north of 99 percent of its risk, as measured by standard deviation, allocated to equities. Thus, portfolio risk typically...
Outsourced CIO | Insights Blog

5 Things to Consider When Choosing an OCIO

Nearly all CFOs and investment committees consider it. And more than ever are acting upon it: investigating the possibility of an Outsourced CIO (OCIO) to manage their institution’s investments. The...
Risk Management | Insights Blog

Defining Risk For Your Organization

Merriam-Webster’s defines risk as the “possibility of loss or injury.” The financial profession — borrowing from Modern Portfolio Theory — uses the standard deviation of a portfolio’s returns to...
Responsible Investing | Articles

Impact Investing: Balancing the best of responsibility & opportunity

Impact investing is showing growth around the world. According to the most recent J.P. Morgan/Global Impact Investing Network Impact Investor Survey, the number of institutional investors engaging in...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

Impact Investing

Recently, Commonfund convened an expert panel of investment managers to hold  a roundtable discussion and take a closer look at the different impact investing strategies being implemented today. The...
Governance And Policy | Articles

Viewpoint: Changing Our Minds

It is often said that we live in a world of change, but it is surprising how slowly that change can occur. Seven years after the onset of the Great Recession, many business school students are still...
Outsourced CIO | Articles

Multi-Asset Investing: Form Follows Function

The design axiom captures the purpose of multi-asset investing Interest in multi-asset investing is growing and the inflows confirm it: Institutional assets committed to multi-asset investing are...
Outsourced CIO | Articles

Of Apples, Oranges and Onions: Assessing OCIO Performance and Fees

Nearly all CFOs and investment committees consider it. And more than ever are acting upon it: investigating the possibility of an Outsourced CIO (OCIO) to manage their institution’s investments. When...
Private Capital | Articles

Global private equity: what and why

What and Why An article in the previous issue of Insight sought to discern the difference between perception and reality in private equity investing generally, and included a companion article...
Perspectives | Articles

Smart money, crowded trades?

For investors building multi-manager portfolios, a look at an alternative hedge fund beta. Approaches to stock selection vary widely across the hedge fund universe, even among managers practicing the...
Risk Management | Articles

Greenhouse Effect

Investment returns of less well-diversified portfolios have flourished in the accommodative market environment created by central banks. But what will happen when rates rise? In the last five years,...
Perspectives | Articles

Working capital: challenge and opportunity

On campus, the thinking about operating asset management is changing with the times. In the wake of the 2008 financial crisis and Great Recession, liquidity was the primary concern on university...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

ESG: What is it?

Generally speaking, Environmental Social and Governance, or ESG for short, is used to describe a group of characteristics that can have a material impact on the long-term success of a company and,...
Governance And Policy | Articles

Evolving Challenges in Nonprofit Governance

Commonfund recently convened an expert panel moderated by Myra Drucker (standing, left), Chair of the Board, TrustedPeer Inc. and former chair of the Commonfund Board of Trustees. The roundtable...
Responsible Investing | Articles

ESG: Sharpening the Point

Environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors are a topic for active discussion in board rooms. Here’s an update on Commonfund’s thoughts and actions and how ESG may relate to you. In general,...
Private Capital | Articles

Private Equity: Perception and Reality

For a variety of reasons, some investors believe that private equity may have lost its edge as a key allocation for their portfolios. This perception may overlook reality. A closer examination...
Outsourced CIO | Articles

Nonstop Nonprofit-Dedicated OCIO

Why an OCIO that's dedicated to serving nonprofits may be preferable to a general practitioner As the OCIO model has evolved and expanded in recent years, a number of financial providers have entered...
Risk Management | Articles

Risk: The Fuel that Generates Portfolio Returns

Risk management: the process of harnessing risk in pursuit of better investment returns In a broad sense, how should nonprofit institutional investors think about investment risk and risk management?...
Private Capital | Insights Blog

Straight Talk About Private Equity

For reasons unknown, many investors assume that private equity may have lost its edge as a key allocation for their portfolios. This perception, however, may not align with reality. By taking a...
Investment Strategy | Articles

Viewpoint: A Different Kind of Climate Change

How have cultural, religious and social service institutions’ investment portfolios changed in response to the financial and market environment that has prevailed over the last several years? While...
Governance And Policy | Insights Blog

10 Point Checklist to Get Governance Right

The regulatory and legislative landscape continues to become more rigorous for nonprofit organizations. In an atmosphere of increasing calls for accountability, boards and senior staff need to take...
Private Capital | Insights Blog

How liquid are Private Capital Investments?

In the wake of the Global Financial Crisis, institutional investors were rightfully concerned about the liquidity profiles of their long term portfolios. Although markets have recovered substantially...
Governance And Policy | Articles

10-Point Checklist: Get Governance Right

Follow this checklist and you'll be on your way…  For nonprofit organizations of all kinds, the regulatory and legislative landscape continues to become more rigorous—which should not come as a...
Investment Strategy | Articles

6 Keys to Choosing the Right Outsourced CIO

Today, few OCIOs that serve nonprofits are total institutional partners. Six questions can help you find one who takes a holistic approach. Not long ago, the definition and scope of an “Outsourced...
Private Capital | Articles

‘What, me? Illiquid?’

Although it has been five years since the collapse of Lehman Brothers—an event that transformed a bad recession into a global financial crisis—the scars of that traumatic episode remain etched in the...
Responsible Investing | Articles

ESG and Your Institution: Doing Well by Doing Good

Investing according to environmental, social and governance principles is maturing into a distinct discipline. Robust research results dispute the conventional wisdom about performance trade-offs. If...
Governance And Policy | Articles

Long-Term Care

Facing cost pressures and a new regulatory regime, healthcare organizations — especially those in the small and mid-sized range — should consider adopting the principles of the endowment model....