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Private foundations rebound with 17.4% returns in 2019

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Laxman Pai, Opalesque Asia:

Private and community foundations reported an average return of 17.4 percent in 2019 while participating community foundations reported an average return of 18.2 percent.

Both represented a dramatic reversal of 2018's average return of -3.5 percent for private foundations and -5.3 percent for community foundations, said 2019 Council on Foundations-Commonfund Study of Investment of Endowments for Private and Community Foundations. All return data are reported net of fees.

With intermediate- and long-term returns being critically important for the mission and objectives of endowed organizations, 2019's returns were a welcomed development for foundation trustees and financial managers, it said. Three-year returns rose to an average of 9.2 percent for private foundations compared to last year's 6.1 percent.

For community foundations, three-year returns averaged 8.9 percent versus last year's 5.6 percent. Trailing five-year returns increased to an average of 6.6 percent for private foundations, up from 4.7 percent, while community foundations saw an increase from 3.9 percent to 6.4 percent.

Participating foundations of all sizes and both types reported average investment returns of 16 percent or more in 2019, whereas all corresponding figures were negative in 2018.

With 265 participating foundations representing combined assets of $104.7 billion, the study revealed that the highest single return in 2019 came from community found......................

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