Lowered Expectations for Investment Returns

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For much of my professional working life (approaching 35 years), a general rule of thumb seemed to be that an endowment or reserve portfolio would earn around 8% annually. Of course at certain times the market did much better, most memorably, the incredible stretch between 1995 and 1999 when the S&P 500 delivered between 21% to 37% each year. Certainly the late nineties period is not likely to return for quite some time but the 8% benchmark may be a thing of the past as well. A study by the council on Foundations and Commonfund stated that private and …read more

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