Even with the slight decline in performance over the past year, Trinity’s endowment remained well above $500 million, ending the year with a balance of $524,000,000. Our endowment’s investment return was a negative 5.3% for the fiscal year 2016. Generally, U.S. equities and fixed income markets outperformed during this period. Our endowment, which is diversified across the global markets and has a large hedge fund and private equity component lagged behind these markets and certain of our peers’ returns. We believe the endowment remains well invested for the longer term, and that the investments we have in sectors that recently underperformed will perform better over longer periods.
A look at Trinity’s 25-year growth history clearly shows that generous
philanthropy, intelligent investing, and prudent spending contributed to
significant gains over this period. More recently, the College’s
investment manager, Investure, continues to focus on maintaining a
comfortable level of liquidity in the portfolio and searching for
opportunistic investments that have asymmetrical upside potential while
limiting downside risk to complement core investments within the
portfolio. Investure also continues to keep a close eye on the changing
global economic landscape. The College administration has continued its
prudent spending policy since the 2009 market collapse by consistently
keeping annual spending under 5 percent of the endowment's market value.
Trinity administrators believe that diversification is paramount to
safeguarding Trinity’s capital and maximizing returns. The investment
committee’s mandate that, “a thoughtfully diversified portfolio provides
necessary protection of the College’s assets,” has been strictly
maintained. Trinity’s endowment is well diversified across asset classes
and the College’s investment manager, Investure, continues to search
for outstanding managers whose performance meets standards set by both
Investure and the College’s investment committee.