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Universities with the largest endowments

Endowments are defined as financial assets, usually money, donated to educational institutions. These endowments are used in part to finance the operation of universities and are also invested for the purpose of making safe returns. When considering the value of the largest university endowments, proportionally small investment returns can mean millions of dollars coming back to the university.

However despite university endowment funds attempting to make stable and secure investments, any investment comes with a degree of risk. During the 2008 financial crisis, Harvard and Yale lost a combined $18 billion in their endowments.

The universities with the largest endowments in the world are:

  1. Harvard University, $51.90 billion
  2. Yale University, $42.28 billion
  3. Stanford University, $37.80 billion
  4. Princeton University, $37.70 billion
  5. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, $27.53 billion
  6. University of Pennsylvania, $20.52 billion
  7. King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, $20.00 billion
  8. University of Notre Dame, $18.07 billion
  9. Northwestern University, $14.96 billion
  10. Columbia University, $14.35 billion

Source of data: NACUBO

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